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1. People vs.

Tudtud [GR 144037, 26 September 2003] Bulong, were subsequently charged before the Regional Trial Court (RTC)
of Davao City with illegal possession of prohibited drugs. Upon
Facts: Sometime during the months of July and August 1999, the Toril
arraignment, both accused pleaded not guilty. The defense, however,
Police Station, Davao City received a report from a civilian asset named
reserved their right to question the validity of their arrest and the seizure
Bobong Solier about a certain Noel Tudtud. Solier related that his
of the evidence against them. Trial ensued thereafter. Tudtud, denying the
neighbors have been complaining about Tudtud, who was allegedly
charges against them, cried frame-up. Swayed by the prosecutions
responsible for the proliferation of marijuana in their area. Reacting to the
evidence beyond reasonable doubt, the RTC rendered judgment convicting
report, PO1 Ronald Desierto, PO1 Ramil Floreta and their superior, SPO1
both accused as charged and sentencing them to suffer the penalty of
Villalonghan, all members of the Intelligence Section of the Toril Police
reclusion perpetua and to pay a fine of P500,000.00. On appeal, Noel
Station, conducted surveillance in Soliers neighborhood in Sapa, Toril,
Tudtud and Dindo Bolong assign, among other errors, the admission in
Davao City. For 5 days, they gathered information and learned that Tudtud
evidence of the marijuana leaves, which they claim were seized in
was involved in illegal drugs. According to his neighbors, Tudtud was
violation of their right against unreasonable searches and seizures.
engaged in selling marijuana. On 1 August 1999, Solier informed the
police that Tudtud had headed to Cotabato and would be back later that Issue: Whether the Tudtuds implied acquiescence (Tudtuds statement of
day with new stocks of marijuana. Solier described Tudtud as big-bodied its all right when the police officers requested that the box be opened)
and short, and usually wore a hat. At around 4:00 p.m. that same day, a be considered a waiver.
team composed of PO1 Desierto, PO1 Floreta and SPO1 Villalonghan
Held: The right against unreasonable searches and seizures is secured by
posted themselves at the corner of Saipon and McArthur Highway to await
Section 2, Article III of the Constitution. The RTC justified the warrantless
Tudtuds arrival. All wore civilian clothes. About 8:00 p.m., 2 men
search of appellants belongings under the first exception, as a search
disembarked from a bus and helped each other carry a carton marked
incident to a lawful arrest. A search incidental to a lawful arrest is
King Flakes. Standing some 5 feet away from the men, PO1 Desierto and
sanctioned by the Rules of Court. It is significant to note that the search in
PO1 Floreta observed that one of the men fit Tudtuds description. The
question preceded the arrest. Recent jurisprudence holds that the arrest
same man also toted a plastic bag. PO1 Floreta and PO1 Desierto then
must precede the search; the process cannot be reversed. Nevertheless, a
approached the suspects and identified themselves as police officers. PO1
search substantially contemporaneous with an arrest can precede the
Desierto informed them that the police had received information that
arrest if the police have probable cause to make the arrest at the outset of
stocks of illegal drugs would be arriving that night. The man who
the search. The question, therefore, is whether the police herein had
resembled Tudtuds description denied that he was carrying any drugs.
probable cause to arrest Tudtud, et. al. The long-standing rule in this
PO1 Desierto asked him if he could see the contents of the box. Tudtud
jurisdiction, applied with a great degree of consistency, is that reliable
obliged, saying, it was alright. Tudtud opened the box himself as his
information alone is not sufficient to justify a warrantless arrest under
companion looked on. The box yielded pieces of dried fish, beneath which
Section 5 (a), Rule 113. The rule requires, in addition, that the accused
were two bundles, one wrapped in a striped plastic bag and another in
perform some overt act that would indicate that he has committed, is
newspapers. PO1 Desierto asked Tudtud to unwrap the packages. They
actually committing, or is attempting to commit an offense. For the
contained what seemed to the police officers as marijuana leaves. The
exception in Section 5 (a), Rule 113 to apply, this Court ruled, two
police thus arrested Tudtud and his companion, informed them of their
elements must concur: (1) the person to be arrested must execute an
rights and brought them to the police station. The two did not resist. The
overt act indicating he has just committed, is actually committing, or is
confiscated items were turned over to the Philippine National Police (PNP)
attempting to commit a crime; and (2) such overt act is done in the
Crime Laboratoryfor examination. Forensic tests on specimens taken from
presence or within the view of the arresting officer. Reliable information
the confiscated items confirmed the police officers suspicion. The plastic
alone is insufficient. Thus, herein, in no sense can the knowledge of the
bag contained 3,200 grams of marijuana leaves while the newspapers
arresting officers that Tudtud was in possession of marijuana be described
contained another 890 grams. Noel Tudtud and his companion, Dindo
as personal, having learned the same only from their informant Solier. An anonymous caller tipped off PO3 Dante Salonga and PO3 Albert
Solier, for his part, testified that he obtained his information only from his Carizon in the early evening of 11 September 1995 that a man and a
neighbors and the friends of Tudtud. Soliers information is hearsay. woman were repacking prohibited drugs at a certain house in Sta. Brigida
Confronted with such a dubious informant, the police perhaps felt it St., Karuhatan, Valenzuela, Metro Manila. PO3 Salonga and PO3 Carizon
necessary to conduct their own surveillance. This surveillance, it turns together with SPO1 Fernando Arenas immediately proceeded to the house
out, did not actually consist of staking out Tudtud to catch him in the act of the suspects and parked their car some three hundred (300) meters
of plying his illegal trade, but of a mere gathering of information from the away. They walked towards their quarry's lair accompanied this time by
assets there. The police officers who conducted such surveillance did their unnamed informer. When they reached the house they "peeped
not identify who these assets were or the basis of the latters (inside) through a small window and x x x saw one man and a woman
information. Clearly, such information is also hearsay, not of personal repacking suspected marijuana."[1] They entered the house and introduced
knowledge. Finally, there is an effective waiver of rights against themselves as police officers to the occupants and thereupon confiscated
unreasonable searches and seizures only if the following requisites are the tea bags and some drug paraphernalia. They arrested the two (2) who
present: (1) It must appear that the rights exist; (2) The person involved turned out to be the accused Zenaida Bolasa y Nakoboan and Roberto
had knowledge, actual or constructive, of the existence of such right; (3) delos Reyes. Subsequent examination of the tea bags by NBI Forensic
Said person had an actual intention to relinquish the right. Here, the Chemist Rubie Calalo confirmed the suspicion that the tea bags contained
prosecution failed to establish the second and third requisites. Records marijuana.
disclose that when the police officers introduced themselves as such and
requested Tudtud that they see the contents of the carton box supposedly Zenaida Bolasa and Roberto delos Reyes were thus charged with
containing the marijuana, Tudtud said it was alright. He did not resist violation of Sec. 8, Art. II, of RA 6425 otherwise known as The Dangerous
and opened the box himself. Tudtud's implied acquiescence, if at all, could Drugs Act of 1972. Both however denied on the witness stand ownership
not have been more than mere passive conformity given under coercive or over the confiscated tea bags and drug implements.
intimidating circumstances and is, thus, considered no consent at all
within the purview of the constitutional guarantee. Consequently, Tudtud's According to Roberto delos Reyes, he and his wife were merely tenants
lack of objection to the search and seizure is not tantamount to a waiver in the house of Zenaida Bolasa and at the time he was arrested he had
of his constitutional right or a voluntary submission to the warrantless just arrived from work. Upon learning that Zenaida was repacking
search and seizure. As the search of Tudtud's box does not come under marijuana inside their room, he immediately ordered her to
the recognized exceptions to a valid warrantless search, the marijuana leave. Unfortunately however it was at that precise moment that police
leaves obtained thereby are inadmissible in evidence. And as there is no authorities entered and announced their presence. He and Zenaida were
evidence other than the hearsay testimony of the arresting officers and then brought to the Valenzuela Police Station for questioning and
their informant, the conviction of Tudtud, et. al. cannot be sustained. subsequently detained.
2. [G.R. No. 125754. December 22, 1999] PEOPLE OF THE
On the part of Zenaida Bolasa, she narrated that at 7:30 in the
PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee, vs. ZENAIDA BOLASA
evening of 11 September 1995 she was on her way to 9th Avenue,
Y NAKOBOAN and ROBERTO DELOS REYES, accused-
Caloocan City, where she was working as a waitress. As she was about to
appellants.
leave the house she met a certain "Rico" and conversed with him for some
time. She denied knowing PO3 Carizon and the fact that the latter saw her
DECISION
repacking marijuana inside her house.
BELLOSILLO, J.:
The trial court upon finding the version of the prosecution to be more prosecution and acquit accused-appellants for insufficiency of evidence
plausible convicted both accused Zenaida Bolasa and Roberto delos Reyes and reasonable doubt.
of the crime charged and sentenced each of them not only to reclusion
perpetua but also to pay a fine of P500,000.00.[2] Section 2, Art. III, of the 1987 Constitution provides -

Both accused appealed, although separately, each one represented by The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and
a separate counsel. effects against unreasonable searches and seizures of whatever nature
and for any purpose shall be inviolable, and no search warrant or warrant
Maintaining his innocence in this appeal, accused-appellant Roberto of arrest shall issue except upon probable cause to be determined
delos Reyes insists he had just arrived from work and had, in fact, just personally by the judge after examination under oath or affirmation of the
entered his room when he was arrested. Assuming he was indeed complainant and the witnesses he may produce, and particularly
repacking marijuana when the police officers arrived, he claims it would describing the place to be searched and the persons or things to be
have been inconceivable for them to know what he was doing inside his seized.
room considering the height of his window. Significantly, the police officers
had to lean first on the window in order to observe the activities inside the The State cannot in a cavalier fashion intrude into the persons of its
room. citizens as well as into their houses, papers and effects. The constitutional
provision sheathes the private individual with an impenetrable armor
Accused-appellant Zenaida Bolasa meanwhile asserts that the search against unreasonable searches and seizures. It protects the privacy and
in her residence was likewise illegal as her arrest preceding it was sanctity of the person himself against unlawful arrests and other forms of
illegal. Consequently, the marijuana seized from her could not be properly restraint,[3] and prevents him from being irreversibly "cut off from that
used as evidence against her. She insists that the trial court should not domestic security which renders the lives of the most unhappy in some
have given credence to the testimony of PO3 Albert Carizon as the same measure agreeable."[4]
was hearsay. According to her and her co-accused delos Reyes, PO3
Carizon was not among the arresting officers. As such, PO3 Carizon had no For sure, this constitutional guarantee is not a blanket prohibition
personal knowledge regarding the conduct of the arrest and search thus against all searches and seizures as it obviously operates only against
making his testimony hearsay. Since the prosecution did not present the searches and seizures that are "unreasonable." [5] Thus, arrests and
two (2) arresting officers the version of the prosecution cannot stand on its seizures in the following instances are not deemed unreasonable and are
own. thus allowed even in the absence of a warrant -

Bolasa likewise impugns the identity of the items confiscated from her 1. Warrantless search incidental to a lawful arrest (Sec. 12, Rule 126 of the
person vis-a-vis those which were submitted for laboratory examination Rules of Court and prevailing jurisprudence);
and charges that the failure of the prosecution to satisfactorily establish
the chain of custody over the specimen is damaging to its case. 2. Search of evidence in plain view. The elements are: (a) a prior valid
intrusion based on the valid warrantless arrest in which the police are
We sustain the appeal. This case clearly illustrates how constitutional legally present in the pursuit of their official duties; (b) the evidence was
guarantees against illegal arrests and seizures can be violated by inadvertently discovered by the police who have the right to be where
overzealous police officers in the arrest of suspected drug offenders. Thus, they are; (c) the evidence must be immediately apparent; and, (d) "plain
after a meticulous evaluation of the evidence at hand, this Court finds view" justified mere seizure of evidence without further search.
itself with no other recourse but to strike down the process adopted by the
3. Search of a moving vehicle. Highly regulated by the government, the found to contain marijuana, was not inadvertently discovered. The police
vehicles inherent mobility reduces expectation of privacy especially when officers intentionally peeped first through the window before they saw and
its transit in public thoroughfares furnishes a highly reasonable suspicion ascertained the activities of accused-appellants inside the room. In like
amounting to probable cause that the occupant committed a criminal manner, the search cannot be categorized as a search of a moving
activity; vehicle, a consented warrantless search, a customs search, or a stop and
frisk; it cannot even fall under exigent and emergency circumstances, for
4. Consented warrantless search; the evidence at hand is bereft of any such showing.

5. Customs search; On the contrary, it indicates that the apprehending officers should
have conducted first a surveillance considering that the identities and
6. Stop and Frisk; and address of the suspected culprits were already ascertained. After
conducting the surveillance and determining the existence of probable
7. Exigent and emergency circumstances.[6] cause for arresting accused-appellants, they should have secured a search
warrant prior to effecting a valid arrest and seizure. The arrest being
An arrest is lawful even in the absence of a warrant: (a) when the illegal ab initio, the accompanying search was likewise illegal. Every
person to be arrested has committed, is actually committing, or is about evidence thus obtained during the illegal search cannot be used against
to commit an offense in his presence; (b) when an offense has in fact been accused-appellants;[9] hence, their acquittal must follow in faithful
committed and he has reasonable ground to believe that the person to be obeisance to the fundamental law.
arrested has committed it; and, (c) when the person to be arrested is a
prisoner who has escaped from a penal establishment or place where he is WHEREFORE, the 12 July 1996 Decision of the Regional Trial Court
serving final judgment or temporarily confined while his case is pending, finding accused-appellants Zenaida Bolasa y Nakoboan and Roberto delos
or has escaped while being transferred from one confinement to another. Reyes guilty of violating Sec. 8, Art. II, of RA 6425 is REVERSED and SET
[7]
A person charged with an offense may be searched for dangerous ASIDE for insufficiency of evidence and on reasonable doubt;
weapons or anything which may be used as proof of the commission of consequently, both are ACQUITTED and ordered RELEASED immediately
the offense.[8] from confinement unless held for another lawful cause.

The manner by which accused-appellants were apprehended does not Their Jailers - the Correctional Institution for Women, Mandaluyong
fall under any of the above-enumerated categories. Perforce, their arrest City, for Zenaida Bolasa y Nakoboan, and the Bureau of Corrections,
is illegal. First, the arresting officers had no personal knowledge that at Muntinlupa City, for Roberto delos Reyes - are DIRECTED to implement this
the time of their arrest, accused-appellants had just committed, were Decision immediately and to report to this Court within five (5) days from
committing, or were about to commit a crime. Second, the arresting receipt hereof their compliance herewith WITHOUT DELAY.
officers had no personal knowledge that a crime was committed nor did
they have any reasonable ground to believe that accused-appellants SO ORDERED.
committed it. Third, accused-appellants were not prisoners who have
escaped from a penal establishment. Mendoza, Quisumbing, Buena, and De Leon, Jr., JJ., concur.

Neither can it be said that the objects were seized in plain view. First,
there was no valid intrusion. As already discussed, accused-appellants
3. Nolasco vs. Cruz Pano [GR L-69803, 8 October 1985]
were illegally arrested. Second, the evidence, i.e., the tea bags later on
Facts: Prior to 6 August 1984, Mila Aguilar-Roque was one of the accused against respondent." A day before that, Aguilar-Roque, et. al. filed a
of Rebellion in Criminal Case SMC-1-1 before Special Military Commission Motion to Suppress, praying that such of the 431 items belonging to them
1, and also one of the accused of Subversion in Criminal CaseMC-25-113 be returned to them. It was claimed that the proceedings under the
of Military Commission 25, both cases being entitled "People of the Search Warrant were unlawful. Judge Santos denied the Motion on 7
Philippines vs. Jose Ma. Sison, et al." She was then still at large. At around January 1985 on the ground that the validity of the Search Warrant has to
9:00 a.m. on August 6, Lt. Col. Virgilio G. Saldajeno of the CSG, applied for be litigated in the other case, apparently unaware of the Order issued by
a Search Warrant from the Hon. Ernani Cruz Pao, Executive Judge of the Judge Pao on December 13. Nolasco, Aguilar-Roque, and Tolentino filed
Regional Trial Court in Quezon City, to be served at No. 239-B Mayon the Petition for Certiorari, Prohibition and Mandamus to annul and set
Street, Quezon City, determined to be the leased residence of Aguilar- aside the (1) Search Warrant issued by RTC Judge Pao; (2) his Order
Roque, after almost a month of "round the clock surveillance" of the admitting the Amended Return and granting the Motion to Retain Seized
premises as a "suspected underground house of the CPP/NPA." Aguilar- Items; and (3) Order of MTC Judge Santos denying Aguilar-Roque, et. al.'s
Roque has been long wanted by the military for being a high ranking Motion to Suppress.
officer of the Communist Party of the Philippines, particularly connected
Issue: Whether the description of the personalities to be seized in the
with the MV Karagatan/Doa Andrea cases. At 11:30 a.m., Aguilar-Roque
search warrant is too general to render the warrant void.
and Cynthia D. Nolasco were arrested by a Constabulary Security Group
(CSG) at the intersection of Mayon Street and P. Margall Street, Quezon Held: The disputed Search Warrant (80-84) describes the personalities to
City. The record does not disclose that a warrant of arrest had previously be seized as "Documents, papers and other records of the Communist
been issued against Nolasco. At 12:00 noon on the same day, elements of Party of the Philippines/New Peoples Army and/or the National Democratic
the CSG searched the premises at 239-B Mayon Street, Quezon City. Willie Front, such as Minutes of the Party Meetings, Plans of these groups,
C. Tolentino, a person then in charge of the premises, was arrested by the Programs, List of possible supporters, subversive books and instructions,
searching party presumably without a warrant of arrest. The searching manuals not otherwise available to the public, and support money from
party seized 428 documents and written materials, and additionally a foreign or local sources." It is at once evident that the Search Warrant
portable typewriter, and 2 wooden boxes, making 431 items in all. On authorizes the seizure of personal properties vaguely described and not
August 10, Aguilar-Roque, Nolasco and Tolentino, were charged before the particularized. It is an all-embracing description which includes everything
Quezon City Fiscal's Office upon complaint filed by the CSG against the conceivable regarding the Communist Party of the Philippines and the
former for "Subversion/Rebellion and/or Conspiracy to Commit National Democratic Front. It does not specify what the subversive books
Rebellion/Subversion. On August 13, the City Fiscal filed an Information for and instructions are; what the manuals not otherwise available to the
Violation of Presidential Decree (PD) 33 (Illegal Possession of Subversive public contain to make them subversive or to enable them to be used for
Documents) against Aguilar-Roque, et. al. before Branch 42 of the the crime of rebellion. There is absent a definite guideline to the searching
Metropolitan Trial Court of Quezon City, Judge Antonio P. Santos, presiding. team as to what items might be lawfully seized thus giving the officers of
On August 16, CSG filed a Motion for Reconsideration with the City Fiscal, the law discretion regarding what articles they should seize as, in fact,
praying that Aguilar-Roque and Nolasco be charged with Subversion. The taken also were a portable typewriter and 2 wooden boxes. It is thus in the
Motion was denied on November 16. On September 10, the CSG submitted nature of a general warrant and infringes on the constitutional mandate
an Amended Return in the Search Warrant case praying, inter alia, that requiring particular description of the things to be seized. Search warrants
the CSG be allowed to retain the seized 431 documents and articles, "in of similar description were considered null and void for being too general.
connection with cases that are presently pending against Mila Aguilar Notwithstanding the irregular issuance of the Search Warrant and
Roque before the Quezon City Fiscal's Office and the court." On December although, ordinarily, the articles seized under an invalid search warrant
13, Judge Pao admitted the Amended Return and ruled that the seized should be returned, they cannot be ordered returned to Aguilar-Roque.
documents "shall be subject to disposition of the tribunal trying the case Some searches may be made without a warrant. Section 12, Rule 126,
Rules of Court, is declaratory in the sense that it is confined to the search, two panty girdles as she had just undergone an operation as a result of an
without a search warrant, of a person who had been arrested. It is also a ectopic pregnancy. Not satisfied with the explanation, Ramirez reported
general rule that, as an incident of an arrest, the place or premises where the matter to her superior, SPO4 Reynaldo Embile, saying "Sir, hindi po
the arrest was made can also be search without a search warrant. In this ako naniniwalang panty lang po iyon." She was directed to take Johnson to
latter case, "the extent and reasonableness of the search must be decided the nearest women's room for inspection. Ramirez took Johnson to the rest
on its own facts and circumstances, and it has been stated that, in the room, accompanied by SPO1 Rizalina Bernal. Embile stayed outside. Inside
application of general rules, there is some confusion in the decisions as to the women's room, Johnson was asked again by Ramirez what the hard
what constitutes the extent of the place or premises which may be object on her stomach was and Johnson gave the same answer she had
searched". Considering that Aguilar-Roque has been charged with previously given. Ramirez then asked her "to bring out the thing under her
Rebellion, which is a crime against public order; that the warrant for her girdle." Johnson brought out three plastic packs, which Ramirez then
arrest has not been served for a considerable period of time; that she was turned over to Embile, outside the women's room. The confiscated packs
arrested within the general vicinity of her dwelling; and that the search of contained a total of 580.2 grams of a substance which was fount by NBI
her dwelling was made within a half hour of her arrest, the Court was of Chemist George de Lara to be methamphetamine hydrochloride or
the opinion that, in her respect, the search at No. 239-B Mayon Street, "shabu." Embile took Johnson and the plastic packs to the 1st Regional
Quezon City, did not need a search warrant; this, for possible effective Aviation and Security Office (1st RASO) at the arrival area of the NAIA,
results in the interest of public order. Such being the case, the where Johnson's passport and ticket were taken and her luggage opened.
personalities seized may be retained by CSG, for possible introduction as Pictures were taken and her personal belongings were itemized. Johnson
evidence in the Rebellion Case, leaving it to Aguilar-Roque to object to was charged for the possession of 3 plastic bages of methamphetamine
their relevance and to ask Special Military Commission 1 to return to her hydrochloride, a regulated drug, weighing a total of 580.2 grams; a
any all irrelevant documents and articles. violation of 16 of RA 6425 (Dangerous Drugs Act), as amended by RA
7659. On 14 May 1999, the Regional Trial Court, Branch 110, Pasay City,
4. People vs. Johnson [GR 138881, 18 December 2000]
found Johnson guilty and sentenced her to suffer the penalty of reclusion
Facts: Leila Reyes Johnson was, at the time of the incident, 58 years old, a perpetua and to pay a fine of P500,000.00 and the costs of the suit.
widow, and a resident of Ocean Side, California, U.S.A. She is a former Johnson appealed.
Filipino citizen who was naturalized as an American on 16 June 1968 and
Issue: Whether the extensive search made on Johnson at the airport
had since been working as a registered nurse, taking care of geriatric
violates her right against unreasonable search and seizure.
patients and those with Alzheimer's disease, in convalescent homes in the
United States. On 16 June 1998, she arrived in the Philippines to visit her Held: The constitutional right of the accused was not violated as she was
son's family in Calamba, Laguna. She was due to fly back to the United never placed under custodial investigation but was validly arrested
States on July 26. On July 25, she checked in at the Philippine Village Hotel without warrant pursuant to the provisions of Section 5, Rule 113 of tie
to avoid the traffic on the way to the Ninoy Aquino International Airport 1985 Rules of Criminal Procedure which provides that "A peace officer or a
(NAIA) and checked out at 5:30 p.m. the next day, 26 June 1998. At private person may, without a warrant, arrest a person: (a) when in his
around 7:30 p.m. of that day, Olivia Ramirez was on duty as a lady frisker presence, the person to be arrested has committed, is actually
at Gate 16 of the NAIA departure area. Her duty was to frisk departing committing, or is attempting to commit an offense; (b) when an offense
passengers, employees, and crew and check for weapons, bombs, has in fact just been committed and person to be arrested has committed
prohibited drugs, contraband goods, and explosives. When she frisked it; and xxx." The circumstances surrounding the arrest of the accused falls
Johnson, a departing passenger bound for the United States via in either paragraph (a) or (b) of the Rule above cited, hence the allegation
Continental Airlines CS-912, she felt something hard on the latter's that she has been subjected to custodial investigation is far from being
abdominal area. Upon inquiry, Mrs. Johnson explained she needed to wear accurate. The methamphetamine hydrochloride seized from her during the
routine frisk at the airport was acquired legitimately pursuant to airport policemen as members. P/Insp. Cortes designated PO3 Manlangit as the
security procedures. Persons may lose the protection of the search and poseur-buyer and SPO1 Badua as his back-up, and the rest of the team as
seizure clause by exposure of their persons or property to the public in a perimeter security. Superintendent Pedro Alcantara, Chief of the North
manner reflecting a lack of subjective expectation of privacy, which Metropolitan District PNP Narcom, gave the team P2,000.00 to cover
expectation society is prepared to recognize as reasonable. Such operational expenses. From this sum, PO3 Manlangit set aside P1,600.00
recognition is implicit in airport security procedures. With increased a one thousand peso bill and six (6) one hundred peso bills as money
concern over airplane hijacking and terrorism has come increased security for the buy-bust operation. The market price of one kilo of marijuana was
at the nation's airports. Passengers attempting to board an aircraft then P1,600.00. PO3 Manlangit marked the bills with his initials and listed
routinely pass through metal detectors; their carry-on baggage as well as their serial numbers in the police blotter. The team rode in two cars and
checked luggage are routinely subjected to x-ray scans. Should these headed for the target area. At 7:20 a.m., "Jun" appeared and the CI
procedures suggest the presence of suspicious objects, physical searches introduced PO3 Manlangit as interested in buying one (1) kilo of
are conducted to determine what the objects are. There is little question marijuana. PO3 Manlangit handed "Jun" the marked bills worth P1,600.00.
that such searches are reasonable, given their minimal intrusiveness, the "Jun" instructed PO3 Manlangit to wait for him at the corner of Shaw
gravity of the safety interests involved, and the reduced privacy Boulevard and Jacinto Street while he got the marijuana from his
expectations associated with airline travel. Indeed, travelers are often associate. An hour later, "Jun" appeared at the agreed place where PO3
notified through airport public address systems, signs, and notices in their Manlangit, the CI and the rest of the team were waiting. "Jun" took out
airline tickets that they are subject to search and, if any prohibited from his bag an object wrapped in plastic and gave it to PO3 Manlangit.
materials or substances are found, such would be subject to seizure. PO3 Manlangit forthwith arrested "Jun" as SPO1 Badua rushed to help in
These announcements place passengers on notice that ordinary the arrest. They frisked "Jun" but did not find the marked bills on him.
constitutional protections against warrantless searches and seizures do Upon inquiry, "Jun" revealed that he left the money at the house of his
not apply to routine airport procedures. The packs of methamphetamine associate named "Neneth." "Jun" led the police team to "Neneth's" house
hydrochloride having thus been obtained through a valid warrantless nearby at Daang Bakal. The team found the door of "Neneth's" house
search, they are admissible in evidence against Johnson. Corollarily, her open and at woman inside. "Jun" identified the woman as his associate.
subsequent arrest, although likewise without warrant, was justified since it SPO1 Badua asked "Neneth" about the P1,600.00 as PO3 Manlangit looked
was effected upon the discovery and recovery of "shabu" in her person in over "Neneth's" house. Standing by the door, PO3 Manlangit noticed a
flagrante delicto. carton box under the dining table. He saw that one of the box's flaps was
open and inside the box was something wrapped in plastic. The plastic
5. People vs. Doria [GR 125299, 22 January 1999]
wrapper and its contents appeared similar to the marijuana earlier "sold"
Facts: In November 1995, members of the North Metropolitan District, to him by "Jun." His suspicion aroused, PO3 Manlangit entered "Neneth's"
Philippine National Police (PNP) Narcotics Command (Narcom), received house and took hold of the box. He peeked inside the box and found that it
information from 2 civilian informants (CI) that one "Jun" was engaged in contained 10 bricks of what appeared to be dried marijuana leaves.
illegal drug activities in Mandaluyong City. The Narcom agents decided to Simultaneous with the box's discovery, SPO1 Badua recovered the marked
entrap and arrest "Jun" in a buy-bust operation. As arranged by one of the bills from "Neneth." The policemen arrested "Neneth." They took "Neneth"
CI's, a meeting between the Narcom agents and "Jun" was scheduled on 5 and "Jun," together with the box, its contents and the marked bills and
December 1995 at E. Jacinto Street in Mandaluyong City. On 5 December turned them over to the investigator at headquarters. It was only then
1995, at 6:00 a.m., the CI went to the PNP Headquarters at EDSA, that the police learned that "Jun" is Florencio Doria y Bolado while
Kamuning, Quezon City to prepare for the buy-bust operation. The Narcom "Neneth" is Violeta Gaddao y Catama. The 1 brick of dried marijuana
agents formed Team Alpha composed of P/Insp. Nolasco Cortes as team leaves recovered from "Jun" plus the 10 bricks recovered from "Neneth's"
leader and PO3 Celso Manlangit, SPO1 Edmund Badua and four (4) other house were examined at the PNP Crime Laboratory. The bricks were found
to be dried marijuana fruiting tops of various weights totalling 7,641.08 committing an offense. When an accused is apprehended in flagrante
grams. On 7 December 1995, Doria and Gadda were charged with delicto as a result of a buy-bust operation, the police are not only
violation of Section 4, in relation to Section 21 of the Dangerous Drugs Act authorized but duty-bound to arrest him even without a warrant. The
of 1972. After trial, the Regional Trial Court, Branch 156, Pasig City warrantless arrest of Gaddao, the search of her person and residence, and
convicted Dorria and Gaddao. The trial court found the existence of an the seizure of the box of marijuana and marked bills, however, are
"organized/syndicated crime group" and sentenced both to death and pay different matters. Our Constitution proscribes search and seizure without a
a fine of P500,000.00 each. Hence, the automatic review. judicial warrant and any evidence obtained without such warrant is
inadmissible for any purpose in any proceeding. The rule is, however, not
Issue: Whether the warrantless arrests of Doria and Gaddao are legally
absolute. Search and seizure may be made without a warrant and the
permissible.
evidence obtained therefrom may be admissible in the following
Held: It is recognized that in every arrest, there is a certain amount of instances: (1) search incident to a lawful arrest; (2) search of a moving
entrapment used to outwit the persons violating or about to violate the motor vehicle; (3) search in violation of customs laws; (4) seizure of
law. Not every deception is forbidden. The type of entrapment the law evidence in plain view; (5) when the accused himself waives his right
forbids is the inducing of another to violate the law, the "seduction" of an against unreasonable searches and seizures. To be lawful, the warrantless
otherwise innocent person into a criminal career. Where the criminal arrest of appellant Gaddao must fall under any of the three (3) instances
intent originates in the mind of the entrapping person and the accused is enumerated in Section 5 of Rule 113 of the 1985 Rules on Criminal
lured into the commission of the offense charged in order to prosecute Procedure. Gaddao was not caught red-handed during the buy-bust
him, there is entrapment and no conviction may be had. Where, however, operation to give ground for her arrest under Section 5 (a) of Rule 113.
the criminal intent originates in the mind of the accused and the criminal She was not committing any crime. Contrary to the finding of the trial
offense is completed, the fact that a person acting as a decoy for the court, there was no occasion at all for Gaddao to flee from the policemen
state, or public officials furnished the accused an opportunity for to justify her arrest in "hot pursuit." In fact, she was going about her daily
commission of the offense, or that the accused is aided in the commission chores when the policemen pounced on her. Neither could the arrest of
of the crime in order to secure the evidence necessary to prosecute him, Gaddao be justified under the second instance of Rule 113. "Personal
there is no entrapment and the accused must be convicted. The law knowledge" of facts in arrests without warrant under Section 5 (b) of Rule
tolerates the use of decoys and other artifices to catch a criminal. The 113 must be based upon "probable cause" which means an "actual belief
warrantless arrest of Doria is not unlawful. Warrantless arrests are allowed or reasonable grounds of suspicion." Gaddao was arrested solely on the
in three instances as provided by Section 5 of Rule 113 of the 1985 Rules basis of the alleged identification made by her co-accused, Doria. Save for
on Criminal Procedure, to wit: "A peace officer or a private person may, Doria's word, the Narcom agents had no reasonable grounds to believe
without a warrant, arrest a person: (a) When, in his presence, the person that she was engaged in drug pushing. If there is no showing that the
to be arrested has committed, is actually committing, or is attempting to person who effected the warrantless arrest had, in his own right,
commit an offense; (b) When an offense has in fact just been committed, knowledge of facts implicating the person arrested to the perpetration of a
and he has personal knowledge of facts indicating that the person to be criminal offense, the arrest is legally objectionable. Since the warrantless
arrested has committed it; and (c) When the person to be arrested is a arrest of Gaddao was illegal, it follows that the search of her person and
prisoner who escaped from a penal establishment or place where he is home and the subsequent seizure of the marked bills and marijuana
serving final judgment or temporarily confined while his case is pending, cannot be deemed legal as an incident to her arrest.
or has escaped while being transferred from one confinement to another.
6. People vs. Valdez [GR 129296, 25 September 2000]
xxx" Under Section 5 (a), as above-quoted, a person may be arrested
without a warrant if he "has committed, is actually committing, or is Facts: At around 10:15 a.m. of 24 September 1996, SPO3 Marcelo Tipay, a
attempting to commit an offense." Herein, Doria was caught in the act of member of the police force of Villaverde, Nueva Vizcaya, received a tip
from an unnamed informer about the presence of a marijuana plantation, plants. He was then made to uproot 5 of the cannabis plants, and bring
allegedly owned by Abe Valdez y Dela Cruz at Sitio Bulan, Ibung, them to his hut, where another photo was taken of him standing next to a
Villaverde, Nueva Vizcaya. The prohibited plants were allegedly planted bundle of uprooted marijuana plants. The police team then brought him to
close to Valdez's hut. Police Inspector Alejandro R. Parungao, Chief of the police station at Villaverde. On the way, a certain Kiko Pascua, a
Police of Villaverde, Nueva Vizcaya then formed a reaction team from his barangay peace officer of Barangay Sawmill, accompanied the police
operatives to verify the report. The team was composed of SPO3 Marcelo officers. Pascua, who bore a grudge against him, because of his refusal to
M. Tipay, SPO2 Noel V. Libunao, SPO2 Pedro S. Morales, SPO1 Romulo G. participate in the former's illegal logging activities, threatened him to
Tobias and PO2 Alfelmer I. Balut. Inspector Parungao gave them specific admit owning the marijuana, otherwise be would "be put in a bad
instructions to "uproot said marijuana plants and arrest the cultivator of situation." At the police headquarters, Valdez reiterated that he knew
same." At approximately 5:00 a.m. the following day, said police team, nothing about the marijuana plants seized by the police. Still, on 26
accompanied by their informer, left for the site where the marijuana plants September 1996, Valdez was charged for the cultivation and culture of the
were allegedly being grown. After a three-hour, uphill trek from the 7 fully grown marijuana plants. On 15 November 1996, Valdez was
nearest barangay road, the police operatives arrived at the place arraigned and, with assistance of counsel, pleaded not guilty to the
pinpointed by their informant. The police found Valdez alone in his nipa charge. Trial on the merits then ensued. On 18 February 1997, the
hut. They, then, proceeded to look around the area where Valdez had his Regional Trial Court of Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya, Branch 27, in Criminal
kaingin and saw 7 five-foot high, flowering marijuana plants in two rows, Case 3105, found Valdez guilty beyond reasonable doubt for violating
approximately 25 meters from Valdez's hut. PO2 Balut asked Valdez who Section 9 of the Dangerous Drugs Act of 1972 (RA 6425, as amended by
owned the prohibited plants and, according to Balut, the latter admitted RA 7659), and sentenced him to suffer the penalty of death by lethal
that they were his. The police uprooted the 7 marijuana plants, which injection. Hence, the automatic review by the Supreme Court.
weighed 2.194 kilograms. The police took photos of Valdez standing
Issue: Whether the seizure of the marijuana plants was made pursuant to
beside the cannabis plants. Valdez was then arrested. One of the plants,
warrantless search and seizure, based on the plain view doctrine.
weighing 1.090 kilograms, was sent to the Philippine National Police Crime
Laboratory in Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya for analysis. Inspector Prevy Held: The Constitution lays down the general rule that a search and
Fabros Luwis, the Crime Laboratory forensic analyst, testified that upon seizure must be carried on the strength of a judicial warrant. Otherwise,
microscopic examination of said plant, she found cystolitic hairs the search and seizure is deemed "unreasonable." Evidence procured on
containing calcium carbonate, a positive indication for marijuana. She the occasion of an unreasonable search and seizure is deemed tainted for
next conducted a chemical examination, the results of which confirmed being the proverbial fruit of a poisonous tree and should be excluded.
her initial impressions. Valdez alleged otherwise. He claims that at around Such evidence shall be inadmissible in evidence for any purpose in any
10:00 a.m., 25 September 1996, he was weeding his vegetable farm in proceeding. Herein, there was no search warrant issued by a judge after
Sitio Bulan when he was called by a person whose identity he does not personal determination of the existence of probable cause. From the
know. He was asked to go with the latter to "see something." This declarations of the police officers themselves, it is clear that they had at
unknown person then brought Valdez to the place where the marijuana least 1 day to obtain a warrant to search Valdez's farm. Their informant
plants were found, approximately 100 meters away from his nipa hut. 5 had revealed his name to them. The place where the cannabis plants were
armed policemen were present and they made him stand in front of the planted was pinpointed. From the information in their possession, they
hemp plants. He was then asked if he knew anything about the marijuana could have convinced a judge that there was probable cause to justify the
growing there. When he denied any knowledge thereof, SPO2 Libunao issuance of a warrant. But they did not. Instead, they uprooted the plants
poked a fist at him and told him to admit ownership of the plants. Valdez and apprehended the accused on the excuse that the trip was a good six
was so nervous and afraid that he admitted owning the marijuana. The hours and inconvenient to them. We need not underscore that the
police then took a photo of him standing in front of one of the marijuana protection against illegal search and seizure is constitutionally mandated
and only under specific instances are searches allowed without warrants. police officers then approached one group of men, who then fled in
The mantle of protection extended by the Bill of Rights covers both different directions. As the policemen gave chase, Yu caught up with and
innocent and guilty alike against any form of high-handedness of law apprehended Sammy Malacat y Mandar (who Yu recognized, inasmuch as
enforcers, regardless of the praiseworthiness of their intentions. The Court allegedly the previous Saturday, 25 August 1990, likewise at Plaza
finds no reason to subscribe to Solicitor General's contention that it should Miranda, Yu saw Malacat and 2 others attempt to detonate a grenade).
apply the "plain view" doctrine. For the doctrine to apply, the following Upon searching Malacat, Yu found a fragmentation grenade tucked inside
elements must be present: (a) a prior valid intrusion based on the valid the latter's "front waist line." Yu's companion, police officer Rogelio
warrantless arrest in which the police are legally present in the pursuit of Malibiran, apprehended Abdul Casan from whom a .38 caliber revolver
their official duties; (b) the evidence was inadvertently discovered by the was recovered. Malacat and Casan were then brought to Police Station 3
police who have the right to be where they are; and (c) the evidence must where Yu placed an "X" mark at the bottom of the grenade and thereafter
be immediately apparent; and (d) plain view justified mere seizure of gave it to his commander. Yu did not issue any receipt for the grenade he
evidence without further search. Herein, the police officers first located allegedly recovered from Malacat. On 30 August 1990, Malacat was
the marijuana plants before Valdez was arrested without a warrant. Hence, charged with violating Section 3 of Presidential Decree 1866. At
there was no valid warrantless arrest which preceded the search of arraignment on 9 October 1990, petitioner, assisted by counsel de officio,
Valdez's premises. The police team was dispatched to Valdez's kaingin entered a plea of not guilty. Malacat denied the charges and explained
precisely to search for and uproot the prohibited flora. The seizure of that he only recently arrived in Manila. However, severalother police
evidence in "plain view" applies only where the police officer is not officers mauled him, hitting him with benches and guns. Petitioner was
searching for evidence against the accused, but inadvertently comes once again searched, but nothing was found on him. He saw the grenade
across an incriminating object. Clearly, their discovery of the cannabis only in court when it was presented. In its decision dated 10 February
plants was not inadvertent. Also, upon arriving at the area, they first had 1994 but promulgated on 15 February 1994, the trial court ruled that the
to "look around the area" before they could spot the illegal plants. warrantless search and seizure of Malacat was akin to a "stop and frisk,"
Patently, the seized marijuana plants were not "immediately apparent" where a "warrant and seizure can be effected without necessarily being
and a "further search" was needed. In sum, the marijuana plants in preceded by an arrest" and "whose object is either to maintain the status
question were not in "plain view" or "open to eye and hand." The "plain quo momentarily while the police officer seeks to obtain more
view" doctrine, thus, cannot be made to apply. information"; and that the seizure of the grenade from Malacat was
incidental to a lawful arrest. The trial court thus found Malacat guilty of
7. Malacat vs. Court of Appeals [GR 123595, 12 December
the crime of illegal possession of explosives under Section 3 of PD 1866,
1997]
and sentenced him to suffer the penalty of not less than 17 years, 4
Facts: On 27 August 1990, at about 6:30 p.m., allegedly in response to months and 1 day of Reclusion Temporal, as minimum, and not more than
bomb threats reported seven days earlier, Rodolfo Yu of the Western Police 30 years of Reclusion Perpetua, as maximum. On 18 February 1994,
District, Metropolitan Police Force of the Integrated National Police, Police Malacat filed a notice of appeal indicating that he was appealing to the
Station No. 3, Quiapo, Manila, was on foot patrol with three other police Supreme Court. However, the record of the case was forwarded to the
officers (all of them in uniform) along Quezon Boulevard, Quiapo, Manila, Court of Appeals (CA-GR CR 15988). In its decision of 24 January 1996, the
near the Mercury Drug store at Plaza Miranda. They chanced upon two Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court. Manalili filed a petition for review
groups of Muslim-looking men, with each group, comprised of three to four with the Supreme Court.
men, posted at opposite sides of the corner of Quezon Boulevard near the
Issue: Whether the search made on Malacat is valid, pursuant to the
Mercury Drug Store. These men were acting suspiciously with "their eyes
exception of stop and frisk.
moving very fast." Yu and his companions positioned themselves at
strategic points and observed both groups for about 30 minutes. The
Held: The general rule as regards arrests, searches and seizures is that a Plaza Miranda 2 days earlier. This claim is neither supported by any police
warrant is needed in order to validly effect the same. The Constitutional report or record nor corroborated by any other police officer who allegedly
prohibition against unreasonable arrests, searches and seizures refers to chased that group. Second, there was nothing in Malacat's behavior or
those effected without a validly issued warrant, subject to certain conduct which could have reasonably elicited even mere suspicion other
exceptions. As regards valid warrantless arrests, these are found in than that his eyes were "moving very fast" an observation which leaves
Section 5, Rule 113 of the Rules of Court. A warrantless arrest under the us incredulous since Yu and his teammates were nowhere near Malacat
circumstances contemplated under Section 5(a) has been denominated as and it was already 6:30 p.m., thus presumably dusk. Malacat and his
one "in flagrante delicto," while that under Section 5(b) has been companions were merely standing at the corner and were not creating any
described as a "hot pursuit" arrest. Turning to valid warrantless searches, commotion or trouble. Third, there was at all no ground, probable or
they are limited to the following: (1) customs searches; (2) search of otherwise, to believe that Malacat was armed with a deadly weapon. None
moving vehicles; (3) seizure of evidence in plain view; (4) consent was visible to Yu, for as he admitted, the alleged grenade was
searches; (5) a search incidental to a lawful arrest; and (6) a "stop and "discovered" "inside the front waistline" of Malacat, and from all
frisk." The concepts of a "stop-and-frisk" and of a search incidental to a indications as to the distance between Yu and Malacat, any telltale bulge,
lawful arrest must not be confused. These two types of warrantless assuming that Malacat was indeed hiding a grenade, could not have been
searches differ in terms of the requisite quantum of proof before they may visible to Yu. What is unequivocal then are blatant violations of Malacat's
be validly effected and in their allowable scope. In a search incidental to a rights solemnly guaranteed in Sections 2 and 12(1) of Article III of the
lawful arrest, as the precedent arrest determines the validity of the Constitution.
incidental search. Here, there could have been no valid in flagrante delicto
8. People vs. Balingan [GR 105834, 13 February 1995]
or hot pursuit arrest preceding the search in light of the lack of personal
knowledge on the part of Yu, the arresting officer, or an overt physical act, Facts: On 31 August 1988, the Narcotics Intelligence Division of the
on the part of Malacat, indicating that a crime had just been committed, Baguio City Police Station received a telephone call from an unnamed
was being committed or was going to be committed. Plainly, the search male informant. He passed the information that Jean Balingan y Bobbonan
conducted on Malacat could not have been one incidental to a lawful was going to Manila with a bag filled with marijuana. Acting on the
arrest. On the other hand, while probable cause is not required to conduct information, then P/Lt. Manuel Obrera formed a surveillance team to
a "stop and frisk," it nevertheless holds that mere suspicion or a hunch will monitor Balingan's movements. The team as deployed at different places
not validate a "stop and frisk." A genuine reason must exist, in light of the in Baguio City, including Balingan's house on Brookside and bus stations.
police officer's experience and surrounding conditions, to warrant the Cpl. Garcia soon reported seeing Balingan move out from her residence at
belief that the person detained has weapons concealed about him. Finally, Brookside and board a taxicab which proceeded to the direction of
a "stop-and-frisk" serves a two-fold interest: (1) the general interest of Bonifacio Street. Balingan was wearing a pink dress and carrying a gray
effective crime prevention and detection, which underlies the recognition luggage with orange or yellow belts. She also reported the make and plate
that a police officer may, under appropriate circumstances and in an number of the taxicab which Balingan boarded. Upon receiving the report,
appropriate manner, approach a person for purposes of investigating Lt. Obrera ordered Cpl. Garcia to proceed to the Philippine Rabbit Terminal
possible criminal behavior even without probable cause; and (2) the more in case Balingan would go there. Pat. Kimay, who must have intercepted
pressing interest of safety and self-preservation which permit the police Cpl. Garcia's message, also reported that the taxicab described by the
officer to take steps to assure himself that the person with whom he deals latter passed along Bonifacio Rotunda. Lt. Obrera instructed him to move
is not armed with a deadly weapon that could unexpectedly and fatally be out and proceed to the Police Checkpoint at Kennon Road going to the
used against the police officer. Here, there are at least three (3) reasons Philippine Military Academy. From his post at the Dangwa Bus Station, Pat.
why the "stop-and-frisk" was invalid: First, there is grave doubts as to Yu's Bueno informed Lt. Obrera that Balingan boarded a Dangwa Bus with plate
claim that Malacat was a member of the group which attempted to bomb number NTU-153 bound for Manila. Lt. Obrera promptly proceeded to the
bus station to verify the report. There, he went up the bus described by on the basis of practicality. This is so considering that before a warrant
Pat. Bueno, and he saw Balingan on the third or fourth seat behind the could be obtained, the place, things and persons to be searched must be
driver's seat. In the luggage carrier above her head was the gray luggage described to the satisfaction of the issuing judge a requirement which
earlier described by Cpl. Garcia. He then left and positioned himself with borders on the impossible in the case of smuggling effected by the use of
Ong at the Lakandula burned area to wait for the bus to depart. At about a moving vehicle that can transport contraband from one place to another
11:00 a.m., the bus moved out (on its way) to Manila via Kennon Road. Lt. with impunity. A warrantless search of a moving vehicle is justified on the
Obrera instructed Pat. Kimay, who was at the Kennon Road Checkpoint, to ground that "it is not practicable to secure a warrant because the vehicle
stop the bus when it reaches the place. Meanwhile, Lt. Obrera and Lt. Ong can be quickly moved out of the locality or jurisdiction in which the
tailed the bus at about 15 to 20 meters behind. As instructed, Pat. Kimay warrant must be sought." Unquestionably, the warrantless search herein is
stopped the bus at the Kennon Road Checkpoint. That was already at not bereft of a probable cause. The Baguio INP Narcotics Intelligence
11:30 a.m. Lt. Obrera and Pat. Ong arrived at the Checkpoint less than a Division received an information that Balingan was going to transport
minute after the bus did and immediately boarded it. Lt. Obrera marijuana in a bag to Manila. Their surveillance operations revealed that
announced a routinary check-up. Pat. Ong identified himself as a Balingan, whose movements had been previously monitored by the
policeman to Balingan and asked her permission to check her luggage, Narcotics Division, boarded a Dangwa bus bound for Manila carrying a
she did not respond and just looked outside the window. He opened the suspicious-looking gray luggage bag. When the moving, public bus was
luggage in the luggage carrier overhead and above Balingan and found stopped, her bag, upon inspection, yielded marijuana. Under those
suspected marijuana in it. He pulled out the luggage and turned it over to circumstances, the warrantless search of Balingan's bag was not illegal.
Lt. Obrera. Thereupon, Lt. Obrera tried to arrest Balingan but the latter
9. Papa vs. Mago [GR L-27360, 28 February 1968]
resisted and tried to bite his hand and furthermore held tightly onto the
window pane. Lt. Obrera asked Pat. Ong to fetch Cpl. Garcia from the Facts: Martin Alagao, head of the counter-intelligence unit of the Manila
Philippine Rabbit Terminal in the City proper, so that she would be the one Police Department, acting upon a reliable information received on 3
to bring out Balingan from the bus. In the meantime, he remained inside November 1966 to the effect that a certain shipment of personal effects,
the bus holding the confiscated luggage while the other passengers allegedly misdeclared and undervalued, would be released the following
alighted from the bus. After some 30 minutes, Garcia arrived and pulled day from the customs zone of the port of Manila and loaded on two trucks,
Balingan out of the bus and brought her to the Baguio City Police Station and upon orders of Ricardo Papa, Chief of Police of Manila and a duly
and there locked her up in jail. On 24 October 1988, Balingan was charged deputized agent of the Bureau of Customs, conducted surveillance at gate
with Violation of Sec. 4, Art. II of Republic Act 6425, otherwise known as 1 of the customs zone. When the trucks left gate 1 at about 4:30 p.m. of 4
"The Dangerous Drugs Act. On 4 April 1989, Balingan was arraigned and November 1966, elements of the counter-intelligence unit went after the
pleaded not guilty. After trial, Balingan was convicted by the Regional Trial trucks and intercepted them at the Agrifina Circle, Ermita, Manila. The
Court of Baguio City, Branch 4, and was sentenced to suffer the penalty of load of the two trucks, consisting of nine bales of goods, and the two
life imprisonment; to pay a fine of P20,000.00 without subsidiary trucks, were seized on instructions of the Chief of Police. Upon
imprisonment in case of insolvency; and to pay the costs. Balingan investigation, a person claimed ownership of the goods and showed to the
appealed. policemen a "Statement and Receipts of Duties Collected on Informal
Entry No. 147-5501", issued by the Bureau of Customs in the name of a
Issue: Whether the search conducted in the Dangwa bus, subsequent to
certain Bienvenido Naguit. Claiming to have been prejudiced by the
police surveillance pursuant to an informants tip, is valid.
seizure and detention of the two trucks and their cargo, Remedios Mago
Held: The search and seizure herein happened in a moving, public and Valentin B. Lanopa filed with the Court of First Instance (CFI) of Manila
vehicle. The rules governing search and seizure have over the years been a petition "for mandamus with restraining order or preliminary injunction
steadily liberalized whenever a moving vehicle is the object of the search (Civil Case 67496), praying for the issuance of a restraining order, ex
parte, enjoining the police and customs authorities, or their agents, from trunk, envelope or other container wherever found when he had
opening the bales and examining the goods, and a writ of mandamus for reasonable cause to suspect the presence therein of dutiable articles
the return of the goods and the trucks, as well as a judgment for actual, introduced into the Philippines contrary to law; and likewise to stop,
moral and exemplary damages in their favor. On 10 November 1966, search and examine any vehicle, beast or person reasonably suspected of
Judge Hilarion Jarencio issued an order ex parte restraining Ricardo Papa holding or conveying such article as aforesaid. It cannot be doubted,
(as Chief of Police of Manila) and Juan Ponce Enrile (as Commissioner of therefore, that Papa, Chief of Police of Manila, could lawfully effect the
Customs) in Civil Case 67496. However, when the restraining order was search and seizure of the goods in question. The Tariff and Customs Code
received by Papa. et. al., some bales had already been opened by the authorizes him to demand assistance of any police officer to effect said
examiners of the Bureau of Customs in the presence of officials of the search and seizure, and the latter has the legal duty to render said
Manila Police Department, an assistant city fiscal and a representative of assistance. This was what happened precisely in the case of Lt. Martin
Remedios Mago. Under date of 15 November 1966, Mago filed an Alagao who, with his unit, made the search and seizure of the two trucks
amended petition, including as party defendants Collector of Customs loaded with the nine bales of goods in question at the Agrifina Circle. He
Pedro Pacis of the Port of Manila and Lt. Martin Alagao of the Manila Police was given authority by the Chief of Police to make the interception of the
Department. At the hearing on 9 December 1966, the lower court, with cargo. Martin Alagao and his companion policemen had authority to effect
the conformity of the parties, ordered that an inventory of the goods be the seizure without any search warrant issued by a competent court. The
made by its clerk of court in the presence of the representatives of the Tariff and Customs Code does not require said warrant herein. The Code
claimant of the goods, the Bureau of Customs, and the Anti- Smuggling authorizes persons having police authority under Section 2203 of the Tariff
Center of the Manila Police Department. On 23 December 1966, Mago filed and Customs Code to enter, pass through or search any land, inclosure,
an ex parte motion to release the goods, alleging that since the inventory warehouse, store or building, not being a dwelling house; and also to
of the goods seized did not show any article of prohibited importation, the inspect, search and examine any vessel or aircraft and any trunk,
same should be released as per agreement of the parties upon her posting package, box or envelope or any person on board, or stop and search and
of the appropriate bond that may be determined by the court. On 7 March examine any vehicle, beast or person suspected of holding or conveying
1967, the Judge issued an order releasing the goods to Mago upon her any dutiable or prohibited article introduced into the Philippines contrary
filing of a bond in the amount of P40,000.00. On 13 March 1967, Papa, on to law, without mentioning the need of a search warrant in said cases. But
his own behalf, filed a motion for reconsideration of the order of the court in the search of a dwelling house, the Code provides that said "dwelling
releasing the goods under bond, upon the ground that the Manila Police house may be entered and searched only upon warrant issued by a judge
Department had been directed by the Collector of Customs of the Port of or justice of the peace." Except in the case of the search of a dwelling
Manila to hold the goods pending termination of the seizure proceedings. house, persons exercising police authority under the customs law may
Without waiting for the court's action on the motion for reconsideration, effect search and seizure without a search warrant in the enforcement of
and alleging that they had no plain, speedy and adequate remedy in the customs laws. Herein, Martin Alagao and his companion policemen did not
ordinary course of law, Papa, et. al. filed the action for prohibition and have to make any search before they seized the two trucks and their
certiorari with preliminary injunction before the Supreme Court. cargo. But even if there was a search, there is still authority to the effect
that no search warrant would be needed under the circumstances
Held: The Chief of the Manila Police Department, Ricardo G. Papa, having
obtaining herein. The guaranty of freedom from unreasonable searches
been deputized in writing by the Commissioner of Customs, could, for the
and seizures is construed as recognizing a necessary difference between a
purposes of the enforcement of the customs and tariff laws, effect
search of a dwelling house or other structure in respect of which a search
searches, seizures, and arrests, and it was his duty to make seizure,
warrant may readily be obtained and a search of a ship, motorboat,
among others, of any cargo, articles or other movable property when the
wagon, or automobile for contraband goods, where it is not practicable to
same may be subject to forfeiture or liable for any fine imposed under
secure a warrant, because the vehicle can be quickly moved out of the
customs and tariff laws. He could lawfully open and examine any box,
locality or jurisdiction in which the warrant must be sought. Having detain the vessels. On October 2 and 4, likewise, the CFI of Palawan
declared that the seizure by the members of the Manila Police Department ordered the Philippine Navy to take the boats in custody. On 2 October
of the goods in question was in accordance with law and by that seizure 1965, the company filed a complaint with application for preliminary
the Bureau of Customs had acquired jurisdiction over the goods for the mandatory injunction (Civil Case 62799) with the CFI of Manila against the
purposes of the enforcement of the customs and tariff laws, to the Commission and the Navy. Among others, it was alleged that at the time
exclusion of the Court of First Instance of Manila. of the seizure of the fishing boats in issue, the same were engaged in
legitimate fishing operations off the coast of Palawan; that by virtue of the
10. Roldan vs. Arca [GR L-25434, 25 July 1975]
offer of compromise dated 13 September 1965 by the company to the
Facts: On 3 April 1964, Morabe, De Guzman & Company filed with the Secretary of Agriculture and Natural Resources, the numerous violations of
Court of First Instance (CFI) of Manila a civil case (56701) against Fisheries the Fishery Laws, if any, by the crew members of the vessels were settled.
Commissioner Arsenio N. Roldan, Jr., for the recovery of fishing vessel Tony On 18 October 1965, Judge Francisco Arca issued an order granting the
Lex VI which had been seized and impounded by the Fisheries issuance of the writ of preliminary mandatory injunction and issued the
Commissioner through the Philippine Navy. On 10 April 1964, the company preliminary writ upon the filing by the company of a bond of P5,000.00 for
prayed for a writ of preliminary mandatory injunction with the CFI, but said the release of the two vessels. On 19 October 1965, the Commission and
prayer was denied. On 28 April 1964, the CFI set aside its order of 10 April the Navy filed a motion for reconsideration of the order issuing the
1964 and granted the company's motion for reconsideration praying for preliminary writ on 18 October 1965 on the ground, among others, that on
preliminary mandatory injunction. Thus, the company took possession of 18 October 1965 the Philippine Navy received from the Palawan CFI two
the vessel Tony Lex VI from the Philippine Fisheries Commission adn the orders dated October 2 and 4, 1965 requiring the Philippine Navy to hold
Philippine Navy by virtue of the said writ. On 10 December 1964, the CFI the fishing boats in custody and directing that the said vessels should not
dismissed Civil Case 56701 for failure of the company to prosecute as well be released until further orders from the Court, and that the bond of
as for failure of the Commission and the Navy to appear on the scheduled P5,000.00 is grossly insufficient to cover the Government's losses in case
date of hearing. The vessel, Tony Lex VI or Srta. Winnie however, remained the two vessels, which are worth P495,000.00, are placed beyond the
in the possession of the company. On 20 July 1965, the Fisheries reach of the Government, thus frustrating their forfeiture as instruments
Commissioner requested the Philippine Navy to apprehend vessels Tony of the crime. On 23 November 1965, Judge Arca denied the said motion
Lex VI and Tony Lex III, also respectively called Srta. Winnie and Srta. for reconsideration. The Commission and the Navy filed a petition for
Agnes, for alleged violations of some provisions of the Fisheries Act and certiorari and prohibition with preliminary injunction to restrain Judge Arca
the rules and regulations promulgated thereunder. On August 5 or 6, from enforcing his order dated 18 October 1965, and the writ of
1965, the two fishing boats were actually seized for illegal fishing with preliminary mandatory injunction thereunder issued.
dynamite. Fish caught with dynamite and sticks of dynamite were then
Issue: Whether the Fisheries Commissioner and the Navy can validly
found aboard the two vessels. On 18 August 1965, the Fisheries
direct and/or effect the seizure of the vessels of the company for illegal
Commissioner requested the Palawan Provincial Fiscal to file criminal
fishing by the use of dynamite and without the requisite licenses.
charges against the crew members of the fishing vessels. On 30
September 1965, there were filed in the CFI of Palawan a couple of Held: Section 4 of Republic Act 3512 approved on 20 March 1963
informations, one against the crew members of Tony Lex III, and another empowers the Fisheries Commissioner to carry out the provisions of the
against the crew members of Tony Lex VI both for violations of Act Fisheries Act, as amended, and all rules and regulations promulgated
4003, as amended by Commonwealth Acts 462, 659 and 1088, i.e., for thereunder, to make searches and seizures personally or through his duly
illegal fishing with the use of dynamite. On the same day, the Fiscal filed authorized representatives in accordance with the Rules of Court, of
an ex parte motion to hold the boats in custody as instruments and "explosives such as dynamites and the like; including fishery products,
therefore evidence of the crime, and cabled the Fisheries Commissioner to fishing equipment, tackle and other things that are subject to seizure
under existing fishery laws"; and "to effectively implement the Executive Order 389 of 23 December 1950, reorganizing the Armed Forces
enforcement of existing fishery laws on illegal fishing." Paragraph 5 of of the Philippines, the Philippine Navy has the function, among others, "to
Section 4 of the same Republic Act 3512 likewise transferred to and assist the proper governmental agencies in the enforcement of laws and
vested in the Philippine Fisheries Commission "all the powers, functions regulations pertaining to Fishing. Section 2210 of the Tariff and Customs
and duties heretofore exercised by the Bureau of Customs, Philippine Navy Code, as amended by PD 34 of 27 October 1972, authorized any official or
and Philippine Constabulary over fishing vessels and fishery matters." person exercising police authority under the provisions of the Code, to
Section 12 of the Fisheries Act, otherwise known as Republic Act 4003, as search and seize any vessel or air craft as well as any trunk, package, bag
amended, prohibits fishing with dynamites or other explosives which is or envelope on board and to search any person on board for any breach or
penalized by Section 76 thereof "by a fine of not less than P1,500.00 nor violation of the customs and tariff laws. Herein, when the Philippine Navy,
more than P5,000.00, and by imprisonment for not less than one (1) year upon request of the Fisheries Commissioner, apprehended on August 5 or
and six (6) months nor more than five (5) years, aside from the 6, 1965 the fishing boats Tony Lex III and Tony Lex VI, otherwise known
confiscation and forfeiture of all explosives, boats, tackles, apparel, respectively as Srta. Agnes and Srta. Winnie, these vessels were found to
furniture, and other apparatus used in fishing in violation of said Section be without the necessary license in violation of Section 903 of the Tariff
12 of this Act." Section 78 of the same Fisheries Law provides that "in case and Customs Code and therefore subject to seizure under Section 2210 of
of a second offense, the vessel, together with its tackle, apparel, furniture the same Code, and illegally fishing with explosives and without fishing
and stores shall be forfeited to the Government." The second paragraph of license required by Sections 17 and 18 of the Fisheries Law. Search and
Section 12 also provides that "the possession and/or finding, of dynamite, seizure without search warrant of vessels and air crafts for violations of
blasting caps and other explosives in any fishing boat shall constitute a the customs laws have been the traditional exception to the constitutional
presumption that the said dynamite and/or blasting caps and explosives requirement of a search warrant, because the vessel can be quickly
are being used for fishing purposes in violation of this Section, and that moved out of the locality or jurisdiction in which the search warrant must
the possession or discover in any fishing boat or fish caught or killed by be sought before such warrant could be secured; hence it is not
the use of dynamite or other explosives, under expert testimony, shall practicable to require a search warrant before such search or seizure can
constitute a presumption that the owner, if present in the fishing boat, or be constitutionally effected. The same exception should apply to seizures
the fishing crew have been fishing with dynamite or other explosives." of fishing vessels breaching our fishery laws: They are usually equipped
Under Section 78 of the Fisheries Act, as amended, any person, with powerful motors that enable them to elude pursuing ships of the
association or corporation fishing in deep sea fishery without the Philippine Navy or Coast Guard.
corresponding license prescribed in Sections 17 to 22 Article V of the
11. People vs. Escano, Usana and Lopez [GR 129756-58,
Fisheries Act or any other order or regulation deriving force from its
28 January 2000]
provisions, "shall be punished for each offense by a fine of not more than
P5,000.00, or imprisonment, for not more than one year, or both, in the Facts: On 5 April 1995 and during a COMELEC gun ban, some law
discretion of the Court; Provided, That in case of an association or enforcers of the Makati Police, namely, PO3 Eduardo P. Suba, PO3 Bernabe
corporation, the President or manager shall be directly responsible for the Nonato, SPO4 Juan de los Santos, and Inspector Ernesto Guico, were
acts of his employees or laborers if it is proven that the latter acted with manning a checkpoint at the corner of Senator Gil Puyat Ave. and the
his knowledge; otherwise the responsibility shall extend only as far as fine South Luzon Expressway (SLEX). They were checking the cars going to
is concerned: Provided, further, That in the absence of a known owner of Pasay City, stopping those they found suspicious, and imposing merely a
the vessel, the master, patron or person in charge of such vessel shall be running stop on the others. At about past midnight, they stopped a Kia
responsible for any violation of this Act: and Provided, further, That in case Pride car with Plate TBH 493. P03 Suba saw a long firearm on the lap of
of a second offense, the vessel together with its tackle, apparel, furniture the person seated at the passenger seat, who was later identified as
and stores shall be forfeited to the Government." Under Section 13 of Virgilio Usana. They asked the driver, identified as Julian D. Escao, to
open the door. P03 Suba seized the long firearm, an M-1 US Carbine, from Held: The Court has ruled that not all checkpoints are illegal. Those which
Usana. When Escao, upon order of the police, parked along Sen. Gil Puyat are warranted by the exigencies of public order and are conducted in a
Ave., the other passengers were searched for more weapons. Their search way least intrusive to motorists are allowed. For, admittedly, routine
yielded a .45 caliber firearm which they seized from Escao. The three checkpoints do intrude, to a certain extent, on motorists' right to "free
passengers were thereafter brought to the police station Block 5 in the Kia passage without interruption," but it cannot be denied that, as a rule, it
Pride driven by PO3 Nonato. Upon reaching the precinct, Nonato turned involves only a brief detention of travelers during which the vehicle's
over the key to the desk officer. Since SPO4 de los Santos was suspicious occupants are required to answer a brief question or two. For as long as
of the vehicle, he requested Escao to open the trunk. Escao readily the vehicle is neither searched nor its occupants subjected to a body
agreed and opened the trunk himself using his key. They noticed a blue search, and the inspection of the vehicle is limited to a visual search, said
bag inside it, which they asked Escao to open. The bag contained a routine checks cannot be regarded as violative of an individual's right
parcel wrapped in tape, which, upon examination by National Bureau of against unreasonable search. In fact, these routine checks, when
Investigation Forensic Chemist Emilia A. Rosaldos, was found positive for conducted in a fixed area, are even less intrusive. The checkpoint herein
hashish weighing 3.3143 kilograms. Virgilio T. Usana and Jerry C. Lopez, conducted was in pursuance of the gun ban enforced by the COMELEC.
together with Julian D. Escao, were charged before the Regional Trial The COMELEC would be hard put to implement the ban if its deputized
Court of Makati City, Branch 64, in Criminal Case 95-936 with violation of agents were limited to a visual search of pedestrians. It would also defeat
Section 4, Article II of Republic Act 6425, as amended. Escao and Usana the purpose for which such ban was instituted. Those who intend to bring
were also charged in Criminal Cases 95-937 and 95-938 with illegal a gun during said period would know that they only need a car to be able
possession of firearms and ammunition in violation of Presidential Decree to easily perpetrate their malicious designs. The facts adduced do not
1866. The cases were consolidated and jointly tried. In its Decision of 30 constitute a ground for a violation of the constitutional rights of the
May 1997, which was promulgated on 17 June 1997, the trial court accused against illegal search and seizure. PO3 Suba admitted that they
convicted Escao, Lopez and Usana in Criminal Case 95-936, Escao in were merely stopping cars they deemed suspicious, such as those whose
Criminal Case 95-937, and Usana in Criminal Case 95-938. Escao filed on windows are heavily tinted just to see if the passengers thereof were
19 June 1997 a Notice of Appeal, but on 16 July 1997, he filed a carrying guns. At best they would merely direct their flashlights inside the
Manifestation and Withdrawal of Appeal, which was granted by the trial cars they would stop, without opening the car's doors or subjecting its
court in its Order of 17 July 1997. Usana and Lopez filed a Notice of Appeal passengers to a body search. There is nothing discriminatory in this as this
on 30 June 1997, manifesting therein that they were appealing to the is what the situation demands. Despite the validity of the search, the
Supreme Court and to the Court of Appeals. Considering the penalties Court cannot affirm the conviction of Usana and Lopez for violation of RA
imposed, the decision in Criminal Case 95-936 was appealed to the 6425, as amended. The following facts militate against a finding of
Supreme Court, while the Court of Appeals took cognizance of the appeal conviction: (1) the car belonged to Escao; (2) the trunk of the car was not
from Criminal Case 95-938. In its Order of 30 June 1997, the trial court opened soon after it was stopped and after the accused were searched for
gave due course to the appeal and ordered the transmittal of the record in firearms; (3) the car was driven by a policeman from the place where it
Criminal Case 95-936 to the Supreme Court and the record of Criminal was stopped until the police station; (4) the car's trunk was opened, with
Case 95-938 to the Court of Appeals. Accordingly, it is only the appeal the permission of Escao, without the presence of Usana and Lopez; and
from the judgment in Criminal Case 95-936 that is before the Supreme (5) after arrival at the police station and until the opening of the car's
Court. trunk, the car was in the possession and control of the police authorities.
No fact was adduced to link Usana and Lopez to the hashish found in the
Issue: Whether the search conducted on Escanos car is illegal, and
trunk of the car. Their having been with Escao in the latter's car before
whether the evidence acquired therein would be sufficient to convict
the "finding" of the hashish sometime after the lapse of an appreciable
Lopez and Usana for possession of illegal drugs.
time and without their presence left much to be desired to implicate them
to the offense of selling, distributing, or transporting the prohibited drug. sought cover inside the car and they were afraid that civilians or
In fact, there was no showing that Usana and Lopez knew of the presence bystanders might be caught in the cross-fire. As a consequence, at around
of hashish in the trunk of the car or that they saw the same before it was 6:30 a.m. of 5 December 1989, searching them composed of F/Lt. Virgilio
seized. Babao as team leader, M/Sgt. Lacdao, Sgt. Magallion, Sgt. Patricio
Pacatang, and elements of the 16th Infantry Battalion under one Col. delos
12. People vs. de Gracia [GR 102009-10, 6 July 1994]
Santos raided the Eurocar Sales Office. They were able to find and
Facts: The incidents took place at the height of the coup d'etat staged in confiscate 6 cartons of M-16 ammunition, five bundles of C-4 dynamites,
December, 1989 by ultra-rightist elements headed by the Reform the M-shells of different calibers, and "molotov" bombs inside one of the
Armed Forces Movement-Soldiers of the Filipino People (RAM-SFP) against rooms belonging to a certain Col. Matillano which is located at the right
the Government. At that time, various government establishments and portion of the building. St. Oscar Obenia, the first one to enter the Eurocar
military camps in Metro Manila were being bombarded by the rightist building, saw Rolando De Gracia inside the office of Col. Matillano, holding
group with their "tora-tora" planes. At around midnight of 30 November a C-4 and suspiciously peeping through a door. De Gracia was the only
1989, the 4th Marine Battalion of the Philippine Marines occupied Villamor person then present inside the room. A uniform with the nametag of Col.
Air Base, while the Scout Rangers took over the Headquarters of the Matillano was also found. As a result of the raid, the team arrested de
Philippine Army, the Army Operations Center, and Channel 4, the Gracia, as well as Soprieso Verbo and Roberto Jimena who were janitors at
government television station. Also, some elements of the Philippine Army the Eurocar building. They were then made to sign an inventory, written in
coming from Fort Magsaysay occupied the Greenhills Shopping Center in Tagalog, of the explosives and ammunition confiscated by the raiding
San Juan, Metro Manila. On 1 December 1989, Maj. Efren Soria of the team. No search warrant was secured by the raiding team because,
Intelligence Division, National Capital Region Defense Command, was on according to them, at that time there was so much disorder considering
board a brown Toyota car conducting a surveillance of the Eurocar Sales that the nearby Camp Aguinaldo was being mopped up by the rebel forces
Office located at Epifanio de los Santos Avenue (EDSA) in Quezon City, and there was simultaneous firing within the vicinity of the Eurocar office,
together with his team composed of Sgt. Crispin Sagario, M/Sgt. Ramon aside from the fact that the courts were consequently closed. The group
Briones, S/Sgt. Henry Aquino, one S/Sgt. Simon and a Sgt. Ramos. The was able to confirm later that the owner of Eurocar office is a certain Mr.
surveillance, which actually started on the night of 30 November 1989 at Gutierrez and that de Gracia is supposedly a "boy" therein. de Gracia was
around 10:00 p.m., was conducted pursuant to an intelligence report charged in two separate informations for illegal possession of ammunition
received by the division that said establishment was being occupied by and explosives in furtherance of rebellion, and for attempted homicide
elements of the RAM-SFP as a communication command post. Sgt. Crispin (Criminal Cases Q-90-11755 and Q-90-11756, respectively), which were
Sagario, the driver of the car, parked the vehicle around 10 to 15 meters tried jointly by the Regional Trial Court of Quezon City, Branch 103. During
away from the Eurocar building near P. Tuazon Street, S/Sgt. Henry Aquino the arraignment, de Gracia pleaded not guilty to both charges. However,
had earlier alighted from the car to conduct his surveillance on foot. A he admitted that he is not authorized to posses any firearms, ammunition
crowd was then gathered near the Eurocar office watching the on-going and/or explosive. The parties likewise stipulated that there was a rebellion
bombardment near Camp Aguinaldo. After a while a group of 5 men during the period from November 30 up to 9 December 1989. On 22
disengaged themselves from the crowd and walked towards the car of the February 1991, the trial court rendered judgment acquitting de Gracia of
surveillance team. At that moment, Maj. Soria, who was then seated in attempted homicide, but found him guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the
front, saw the approaching group and immediately ordered Sgt. Sagario to offense of illegal possession of firearms in furtherance of rebellion and
start the car and leave the area. As they passed by the group, then only 6 sentenced him to serve the penalty of reclusion perpetua. De Gracia
meters away, the latter pointed to them, drew their guns and fired at the appealed.
team, which attack resulted in the wounding of Sgt. Sagario on the right
Issue: Whether the military operatives made a valid search and seizure
thigh. Nobody in the surveillance team was able to retaliate because they
during the height of the December 1989 coup detat.
Held: It is admitted that the military operatives who raided the Eurocar "WALTER FIERZ, Mattacketr II, 8052 Zurich, Switzerland." Anita Reyes did
Sales Office were not armed with a search warrant at that time. The raid not inspect the packages as Marti refused, who assured the former that
was actually precipitated by intelligence reports that said office was being the packages simply contained books, cigars, and gloves and were gifts to
used as headquarters by the RAM. Prior to the raid, there was a his friend in Zurich. In view of Marti's representation, the 4 packages were
surveillance conducted on the premises wherein the surveillance team then placed inside a brown corrugated box, with styro-foam placed at the
was fired at by a group of men coming from the Eurocar building. When bottom and on top of the packages, and sealed with masking tape. Before
the military operatives raided the place, the occupants thereof refused to delivery of Marti's box to the Bureau of Customs and/or Bureau of Posts,
open the door despite the requests for them to do so, thereby compelling Mr. Job Reyes (proprietor) and husband of Anita (Reyes), following
the former to break into the office. The Eurocar Sales Office is obviously standard operating procedure, opened the boxes for final inspection,
not a gun store and it is definitely not an armory or arsenal which are the where a peculiar odor emitted therefrom. Job pulled out a cellophane
usual depositories for explosives and ammunition. It is primarily and solely wrapper protruding from the opening of one of the gloves, and took
engaged in the sale of automobiles. The presence of an unusual quantity several grams of the contents thereof. Job Reyes forthwith prepared a
of high-powered firearms and explosives could not be justifiably or even letter reporting the shipment to the NBI and requesting a laboratory
colorably explained. In addition, there was general chaos and disorder at examination of the samples he extracted from the cellophane wrapper. At
that time because of simultaneous and intense firing within the vicinity of the Narcotics Section of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), the box
the office and in the nearby Camp Aguinaldo which was under attack by containing Marti's packages was opened, yielding dried marijuana leaves,
rebel forces. The courts in the surrounding areas were obviously closed or cake-like (bricks) dried marijuana leaves. The NBI agents made an
and, for that matter, the building and houses therein were deserted. inventory and took charge of the box and of the contents thereof, after
Under the foregoing circumstances, the case falls under one of the signing a "Receipt" acknowledging custody of the said effects. Thereupon,
exceptions to the prohibition against a warrantless search. In the first the NBI agents tried to locate Marti but to no avail, inasmuch as the
place, the military operatives, taking into account the facts obtaining in latter's stated address was the Manila Central Post Office. Thereafter, an
this case, had reasonable ground to believe that a crime was being Information was filed against Marti for violation of RA 6425, otherwise
committed. There was consequently more than sufficient probable cause known as the Dangerous Drugs Act. After trial, the Special Criminal Court
to warrant their action. Furthermore, under the situation then prevailing, of Manila (Regional Trial Court, Branch XLIX) rendered the decision,
the raiding team had no opportunity to apply for and secure a search convicting Marti of violation of Section 21 (b), Article IV in relation to
warrant from the courts. The trial judge himself manifested that on 5 Section 4, Article 11 and Section 2 (e)(i), Article 1 of Republic Act 6425, as
December 1989 when the raid was conducted, his court was closed. Under amended, otherwise known as the Dangerous Drugs Act. Marti appealed.
such urgency and exigency of the moment, a search warrant could
Issue: Whether an act of a private individual, allegedly in violation of the
lawfully be dispensed with.
accused's constitutional rights, be invoked against the State.
13. People vs. Andre Marti [GR 81561, 18 January 1991]
Held: In the absence of governmental interference, the liberties
Facts: On 14 August 1987, Andre Marti and his common-law wife, Shirley guaranteed by the Constitution cannot be invoked against the State. The
Reyes, went to the booth of the Manila Packing and Export Forwarders in contraband herein, having come into possession of the Government
the Pistang Pilipino Complex, Ermita, Manila, carrying with them 4 gift- without the latter transgressing the accused's rights against unreasonable
wrapped packages. Anita Reyes (the proprietress and no relation to Shirley search and seizure, the Court sees no cogent reason why the same should
Reyes) attended to them. Marti informed Anita Reyes that he was sending not be admitted against him in the prosecution of the offense charged.
the packages to a friend in Zurich, Switzerland. Marti filled up the contract The mere presence of the NBI agents did not convert the reasonable
necessary for the transaction, writing therein his name, passport number, search effected by Reyes into a warrantless search and seizure proscribed
the date of shipment and the name and address of the consignee, namely, by the Constitution. Merely to observe and look at that which is in plain
sight is not a search. Having observed that which is open, where no carrying Mula and Molina passed by. At that instance, SPO1 Paguidopon
trespass has been committed in aid thereof, is not search. Where the pointed to Mula and Molina as the pushers. Thereupon, the team boarded
contraband articles are identified without a trespass on the part of the their vehicle and overtook the "trisikad." SPO1 Paguidopon was left in his
arresting officer, there is not the search that is prohibited by the house, 30 meters from where Mula and Molina were accosted. The police
constitution. The constitutional proscription against unlawful searches and officers then ordered the "trisikad" to stop. At that point, Mula, who was
seizures therefore applies as a restraint directed only against the holding a black bag, handed the same to Molina. Subsequently, SPO1
government and its agencies tasked with the enforcement of the law. Pamplona introduced himself as a police officer and asked Molina to open
Thus, it could only be invoked against the State to whom the restraint the bag. Molina replied, "Boss, if possible we will settle this." SPO1
against arbitrary and unreasonable exercise of power is imposed. If the Pamplona insisted on opening the bag, which revealed dried marijuana
search is made upon the request of law enforcers, a warrant must leaves inside. Thereafter, Mula and Molina were handcuffed by the police
generally be first secured if it is to pass the test of constitutionality. officers. On 6 December 1996, the accused Mula and Molina, through
However, if the search is made at the behest or initiative of the proprietor counsel, jointly filed a Demurrer to Evidence, contending that the
of a private establishment for its own and private purposes, as in the case marijuana allegedly seized from them is inadmissible as evidence for
at bar, and without the intervention of police authorities, the right against having been obtained in violation of their constitutional right against
unreasonable search and seizure cannot be invoked for only the act of unreasonable searches and seizures. The demurrer was denied by the trial
private individual, not the law enforcers, is involved. In sum, the court. A motion for reconsideration was filed by the accused, but this was
protection against unreasonable searches and seizures cannot be likewise denied. The accused waived presentation of evidence and opted
extended to acts committed by private individuals so as to bring it within to file a joint memorandum. On 25 April 1997, the trial court rendered the
the ambit of alleged unlawful intrusion by the government. decision, finding the accused guilty of the offense charged, and sentenced
both to suffer the penalty of death by lethal injection. Pursuant to Article
14. People vs. Molina [GR 133917, 19 February 2001]
47 of the Revised Penal Code and Rule 122, Section 10 of the Rules of
Facts: Sometime in June 1996, SPO1 Marino Paguidopon, then a member Court, the case was elevated to the Supreme Court on automatic review.
of the Philippine National Police (PNP) detailed at Precinct No. 3, Matina,
Issue: Whether Mula and Molina manifested outward indication that would
Davao City, received an information regarding the presence of an alleged
justify their arrest, and the seizure of prohibited drugs that were in their
marijuana pusher in Davao City. The first time he came to see the said
possession.
marijuana pusher in person was during the first week of July 1996. SPO1
Paguidopon was then with his informer when a motorcycle passed by. His Held: The fundamental law of the land mandates that searches and
informer pointed to the motorcycle driver, Gregorio Mula y Malagura seizures be carried out in a reasonable fashion, that is, by virtue or on the
(@"Boboy"), as the pusher. As to Nasario Molina y Manamat (@ "Bobong"), strength of a search warrant predicated upon the existence of a probable
SPO1 Paguidopon had no occasion to see him prior to 8 August 1996. At cause. Complementary to the foregoing provision is the exclusionary rule
about 7:30 a.m. of 8 August 1996, SPO1 Paguidopon received an enshrined under Article III, Section 3, paragraph 2, which bolsters and
information that the alleged pusher will be passing at NHA, Maa, Davao solidifies the protection against unreasonable searches and seizures. The
City any time that morning. Consequently, at around 8:00 a.m. he called foregoing constitutional proscription, however, is not without exceptions.
for assistance at the PNP, Precinct 3, Matina, Davao City, which Search and seizure may be made without a warrant and the evidence
immediately dispatched the team of SPO4 Dionisio Cloribel (team leader), obtained therefrom may be admissible in the following instances: (1)
SPO2 Paguidopon (brother of SPO1 Marino Paguidopon), and SPO1 search incident to a lawful arrest; (2) search of a moving motor vehicle;
Pamplona, to proceed to the house of SPO1 Marino Paguidopon where they (3) search in violation of customs laws; (4) seizure of evidence in plain
would wait for the alleged pusher to pass by. At around 9:30 a.m., while view; (5) when the accused himself waives his right against unreasonable
the team were positioned in the house of SPO1 Paguidopon, a "trisikad" searches and seizures; and (6) stop and frisk situations (Terry search). The
first exception (search incidental to a lawful arrest) includes a valid for investigation. At the inquest proceeding, the City Prosecutor found that
warrantless search and seizure pursuant to an equally valid warrantless the petitioners stabbed Atty. Generoso with a bladed weapon.
arrest which must precede the search. Still, the law requires that there be Consequently, the petitioners were indicted for attempted murder. The
first a lawful arrest before a search can be made the process cannot be petitioners filed an Urgent Motion for Regular Preliminary Investigation on
reversed. Herein, Mula and Molina manifested no outward indication that the ground that they had not been lawfully arrested as there was no valid
would justify their arrest. In holding a bag on board a trisikad, they could warrantless arrest since the police officers had no personal knowledge
not be said to be committing, attempting to commit or have committed a that they were the perpetrators of the crime. Thus, the inquest proceeding
crime. It matters not that Molina responded "Boss, if possible we will settle was improper, and a regular procedure for preliminary investigation
this" to the request of SPO1 Pamplona to open the bag. Such response should have been performed. The Regional Trial Court (RTC) denied the
which allegedly reinforced the "suspicion" of the arresting officers that petitioners' Motion. On petition for certiorari before the Court of Appeals
Mula and Molina were committing a crime, is an equivocal statement (CA), the petition was dismissed for lack of merit. The petitioners moved
which standing alone will not constitute probable cause to effect an in for reconsideration, but the CA denied the motion.
flagrante delicto arrest. Note that were it not for SPO1 Marino Paguidopon,
ISSUE: Whether the petitioners were validly arrested without a warrant
Mula and Molina could not be the subject of any suspicion, reasonable or
otherwise. Further, it would appear that the names and addresses of Mula RULING: The petitioners were validly arrested. In light of the discussion
and Molina came to the knowledge of SPO1 Paguidopon only after they on the developments of Section 5(b), Rule 113 of the Revised Rules of
were arrested, and such cannot lend a semblance of validity on the arrest Criminal Procedure and our jurisprudence on the matter, we hold that the
effected by the peace officers. Withal, the Court holds that the arrest of following must be present for a valid warrantless arrest: 1) the crime
Mula and Molina does not fall under the exceptions allowed by the rules. should have been just committed; and 2) the arresting officer's exercise of
Hence, the search conducted on their person was likewise illegal. discretion is limited by the standard of probable cause to be determined
Consequently, the marijuana seized by the peace officers could not be from the facts and circumstances within his personal knowledge. The
admitted as evidence against them. requirement of the existence of probable cause objectifies the
reasonableness of the warrantless arrest for purposes of compliance with
15. JOEY M. PESTILOS, et. al.v. MORENO GENEROSO AND
the Constitutional mandate against unreasonable arrests.
PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES G.R. No. 182601, 10 November
2014, SECOND DIVISION (Brion, J.) To summarize, the arresting officers went to the scene of the crime upon
Personal knowledge of a crime just committed does not require actual the complaint of Atty. Generoso of his alleged mauling; the police officers
presence at the scene while a crime was being committed; it is enough responded to the scene of the crime less than one (1) hour after the
that evidence of the recent commission of the crime is patent and the alleged mauling; the alleged crime transpired in a community where Atty.
police officer has probable cause to believe based on personal knowledge Generoso and the petitioners reside; Atty. Generoso positively identified
of facts or circumstances, that the person to be arrested has recently the petitioners as those responsible for his mauling and, notably, the
committed the crime. petitioners and Atty. Generoso lived almost in the same neighborhood;
more importantly, when the petitioners were confronted by the arresting
FACTS: On February 20, 2005, at around 3:15 in the morning, an
officers, they did not deny their participation in the incident with Atty.
altercation ensued between petitioners Joey M. Pestilos, Dwight
Generoso, although they narrated a different version of what transpired.
Macapanas, Miguel Gaces, Jerry Fernandez, and Roland Muoz and Atty.
Moreno Generoso. The police officers arrived at the scene of the crime less With these facts and circumstances that the police officers gathered and
than one hour after the alleged altercation and they saw Atty. Generoso which they have personally observed less than one hour from the time
badly beaten.cAtty. Generoso then pointed to the petitioners as those who that they have arrived at the scene of the crime until the time of the
mauled him, which prompted the police officers to "invite" the petitioners arrest of the petitioners, we deem it reasonable to conclude that the
police officers had personal knowledge of facts or circumstances justifying gunman who went on top of the hood of the CAPCOM mobile patrol car,
the petitioners' warrantless arrests. These circumstances were well within and fired at the 2 CAPCOM soldiers seated inside the car identified as
the police officers' observation, perception and evaluation at the time of T/Sgt. Carlos Pabon and CIC Renato Manligot. As a consequence of this
the arrest. These circumstances qualify as the police officers' personal positive identification, Dural was referred to the Caloocan City Fiscal who
observation, which are within their personal knowledge, prompting them conducted an inquest and thereafter filed with the Regional Trial Court of
to make the warrantless arrests. Caloocan City an information charging Rolando Dural alias Ronnie Javelon
with the crime of "Double Murder with Assault Upon Agents of Persons in
In determining the reasonableness of the warrantless arrests, it is
Authority." (Criminal Case C-30112; no bail recommended). On 15
incumbent upon the courts to consider if the police officers have complied
February 1988, the information was amended to include, as defendant,
with the requirements set under Section 5(b), Rule 113 of the Revised
Bernardo Itucal, Jr. who, at the filing of the original information, was still
Rules of Criminal Procedure, specifically, the requirement of immediacy;
unidentified. Meanwhile, on 6 February 1988, a petition for habeas corpus
the police officer's personal knowledge of facts or circumstances; and
was filed with the Supreme Court on behalf of Roberto Umil, Rolando
lastly, the propriety of the determination of probable cause that the
Dural, and Renato Villanueva. The Court issued the writ of habeas corpus
person sought to be arrested committed the crime.
on 9 February 1988 and Fidel V. Ramos, Maj. Gen. Renato de Villa, Brig.
The records show that soon after the report of the incident occurred, SPOl Gen. Ramon Montano, and Brig. Gen. Alexander Aguirre filed a Return of
Monsalve immediately dispatched the arresting officer, SP02 Javier, to the Writ on 12 February 1988. Thereafter, the parties were heard on 15
render personal assistance to the victim. This fact alone negates the February 1988. On 26 February 1988, however, Umil and Villanueva
petitioners' argument that the police officers did not have personal posted bail before the Regional Trial Court of Pasay City where charges for
knowledge that a crime had been committed - the police immediately violation of the Anti-Subversion Act had been filed against them, and they
responded and had personal knowledge that a crime had been committed. were accordingly released.

16. In RE: Umil, Umil vs. Ramos [GR 81567, 9 July 1990]; Issue: Whether Dural can be validly arrested without any warrant of arrest
also Roque vs. de Villa [GR 84581-82], In RE: Anonuevo. for the crime of rebellion.
Anonuevo vs. Ramos [GR 84583-84], In RE: Ocaya. Ocaya vs.
Held: Dural, it clearly appears that he was not arrested while in the act of
Aguirre [GR 83162], In RE: Espiritu. Espiritu vs. Lim [GR
shooting the 2 CAPCOM soldiers nor was he arrested just after the
85727], and In RE: Nazareno. Nazareno vs. Station
commission of the said offense for his arrest came a day after the said
Commander of Muntinlupa Police Station [GR 86332]
shooting incident. Seemingly, his arrest without warrant is unjustified.
Facts: [GR 81567] On 1 February 1988, the Regional Intelligence However, Dural was arrested for being a member of the New Peoples
Operations Unit of the Capital Command (RIOU-CAPCOM) received Army (NPA), an outlawed subversive organization. Subversion being a
confidential information about a member of the NPA Sparrow Unit continuing offense, the arrest of Rolando Dural without warrant is justified
(liquidation squad) being treated for a gunshot wound at the St. Agnes as it can be said that he was committing an offense when arrested. The
Hospital in Roosevelt Avenue, Quezon City. Upon verification, it was found crimes of rebellion, subversion, conspiracy or proposal to commit such
that the wounded person, who was listed in the hospital records as Ronnie crimes, and crimes or offenses committed in furtherance thereof or in
Javelon, is actually Rolando Dural, a member of the NPA liquidation squad, connection therewith constitute direct assaults against the State and are
responsible for the killing of 2 CAPCOM soldiers the day before, or on 31 in the nature of continuing crimes. The arrest of persons involved in the
January 1988, in Macanining Street, Bagong Barrio, Caloocan City. In view rebellion whether as its fighting armed elements, or for committing non-
of this verification, Dural was transferred to the Regional Medical Services violent acts but in furtherance of the rebellion, is more an act of capturing
of the CAPCOM, for security reasons. While confined thereat, or on 4 them in the course of an armed conflict, to quell the rebellion, than for the
February 1988, Dural was positively identified by eyewitnesses as the purpose of immediately prosecuting them in court for a statutory offense.
The arrest, therefore, need not follow the usual procedure in the capturing persons committing overt acts of violence against government
prosecution of offenses which requires the determination by a judge of the forces, or any other milder acts but equally in pursuance of the rebellious
existence of probable cause before the issuance of a judicial warrant of movement. The arrest or capture is thus impelled by the exigencies of the
arrest and the granting of bail if the offense is bailable. Obviously, the situation that involves the very survival of society and its government and
absence of a judicial warrant is no legal impediment to arresting or duly constituted authorities.