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In the meantime, let copy of this order and petition be served upon On July 23, 2007, the RTC

e RTC rendered its Decision,6 as follows:


G.R. No. 201043 June 16, 2014 the respondent for him to file an OPPOSITION within a period of five
(5) days from receipt hereof and let a Preliminary Conference and After careful review and scrutiny of the evidence presented in this
REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES, represented by the Armed case, this court finds that there is a need to permanently protect the
Forces of the Philippines Finance Center (AFPFC), Petitioner, hearing on the merits be set on October 17, 2006 at 2:00 o’clock in
the afternoon. applicant, Daisy R. Yahon from further acts of violence that might be
vs. committed by respondent against her. Evidences showed that
DAISY R. YAHON, Respondent. To insure that petitioner can receive a fair share of respondent’s respondent who was a member of the Armed Forces of the
DECISION retirement and other benefits, the following agencies thru their heads Philippines assigned at the Headquarters 4ID Camp Evangelista,
are directed to WITHHOLD any retirement, pension and other Cagayan de Oro City had been repeatedly inflicting physical, verbal,
VILLARAMA, JR., J.: benefits of respondent, S/SGT. CHARLES A. YAHON, a member of emotional and economic abuse and violence upon the petitioner.
the Armed Forces of the Philippines assigned at 4ID, Camp Respondent in several instances had slapped, mauled and punched
Before the Court is a petition for review on certiorari under Rule 45
Evangelista, Patag, Cagayan de Oro City until further orders from the petitioner causing her physical harm. Exhibits G and D are medical
which seeks to nullify and set aside the Decision1 dated November
court: certificates showing physical injuries suffered by petitioner inflicted by
29, 2011 and Resolution2 dated March 9, 2012 of the Court of
the respondent at instances of their marital altercations. Respondent
Appeals (CA) Mindanao Station in CA-G.R. SP No. 02953-MIN. The 1. Commanding General/Officer of the Finance Center of at the height of his anger often poked a gun on petitioner and
CA affirmed the orders and decision of the Regional Trial Court the Armed Forces of the Philippines, Camp Emilio threatened to massacre her and her child causing them to flee for
(RTC) of Cagayan de Oro City, Branch 22 granting temporary and Aguinaldo, Quezon City; their lives and sought refuge from other people. He had demanded
permanent protection orders, and denying the motion to lift the said
2. The Management of RSBS, Camp Emilio Aguinaldo, sex from petitioner at an unreasonable time when she was sick and
temporary protection order (TPO).
Quezon City; chilling and when refused poked a gun at her. Several police blotters
Daisy R. Yahon (respondent) filed a petition for the issuance of were offered as evidence by petitioner documenting the incidents
protection order under the provisions of Republic Act (R.A.) No. 3. The Regional Manager of PAG-IBIG, Mortola St., when she was subjected to respondent’s ill temper and ill treatment.
9262,3 otherwise known as the "Anti-Violence Against Women and Cagayan de Oro City. Verbally, petitioner was not spared from respondent’s abuses by
Their Children Act of 2004," against her husband, S/Sgt. Charles A. shouting at her that he was wishing she would die and he would
VIOLATION OF THIS ORDER IS PUNISHABLE BY LAW.
Yahon (S/Sgt. Yahon), an enlisted personnel of the Philippine Army celebrate if it happens and by calling and sending her threatening text
who retired in January 2006. Respondent and S/Sgt. Yahon were IF THE RESPONDENT APPEARS WITHOUT COUNSEL ON THE messages. These incidents had caused petitioner great psychological
married on June 8, 2003. The couple did not have any child but DATE OF THE PRELIMINARYCONFERENCE AND HEARING ON trauma causing her [to] fear for her life and these forced her to seek
respondent has a daughter with her previous live-in partner. THE MERITS OF THE ISSUANCE OF A PERMANENT refuge from the court for protection. Economically, petitioner was also
PROTECTION ORDER, THE COURT SHALL NOT RESCHEDULE deprived by respondent of her spousal support despite order of the
On September 28, 2006, the RTC issued a TPO, as follows: OR POSTPONE THE PRELIMINARY CONFERENCE AND court directing him to give a monthly support of Php4,000.00. In view
Finding the herein petition for the Issuance of Protection Order to be HEARING BUT SHALL APPOINT A LAWYER FOR THE of the foregoing, this court finds a need to protect the life of the
sufficient in form and substance and to prevent great and irreparable RESPONDENT AND IMMEDIATELY PROCEED WITH THE SAID petitioner not only physically but also emotionally and psychologically.
injury to the petitioner, a TEMPORARY PROTECTION ORDER is HEARING.
Based on the evidence presented, both oral and documentary, and
forthwith issued to respondent, S/SGT. CHARLES A. YAHON IF THE RESPONDENT FAILS TO APPEAR ON THE DATE OF THE there being no controverting evidence presented by respondent, this
directing him to do the following acts: PRELIMINARY CONFERENCE AND HEARING ON THE MERITS Court finds that the applicant has established her case by
1. Respondent is enjoined from threatening to commit or DESPITE PROPER NOTICE, THE COURT SHALL ALLOW EX- preponderance of evidence.
committing further acts of physical abuse and violence PARTE PRESENTATION OF EVIDENCE BY THE PETITIONER
WHEREFORE, premises considered, judgment is hereby rendered
against the petitioner; AND RENDER JUDGMENT ON THE BASIS OF THE PLEADINGS
GRANTING the petition, thus, pursuant to Sec. 30 of A.M. No. 04-10-
AND EVIDENCE ON RECORD. NO DELEGATION OF THE
2. To stay away at a distance of at least 500 meters from 1-SC, let a PERMANENT PROTECTION ORDER be issued
RECEPTION OF EVIDENCE SHALL BE ALLOWED.
petitioner, her residence or her place of work; immediately and respondent, S/Sgt. CHARLES A.YAHON is ordered
SO ORDERED.4 (Emphasis supplied.) to give to petitioner, DAISY R. YAHON the amount of FOUR
3. To refrain from harassing, annoying, intimidating, THOUSAND PESOS (Php4,000.00) per month by way of spousal
contacting or communicating with petitioner; 4. S/Sgt. Yahon, having been personally served with copy of the TPO, support.
Respondent is prohibited from using or possessing any appeared during the scheduled pre-trial but informed the court that he
firearm or deadly weapon on occasions not related to his did not yet have a counsel and requested for time to hire his own Pursuant to the order of the court dated February 6, 2007,
job; counsel. However, he did not hire a counsel nor file an opposition or respondent, S/Sgt. Charles A. Yahon is directed to give it to petitioner
answer to the petition. Because of his failure to appear in the 50% of whatever retirement benefits and other claims that may be
5. To provide reasonable financial spousal support to the subsequent hearings of the case, the RTC allowed the ex-parte due or released to him from the government and the said share of
petitioner. presentation of evidence to determine the necessity of issuance of a petitioner shall be automatically deducted from respondent’s benefits
Permanent Protection Order (PPO). and claims and be given directly to the petitioner, Daisy R. Yahon.
The Local Police Officers and the Barangay Officials through the
Chairman in the area where the petitioner and respondent live at Meanwhile, as prayed for by respondent who manifested that S/Sgt. Let copy of this decision be sent to the Commanding General/Officer
Poblacion, Claveria, Misamis Oriental and Bobuntogan, Jasaan, Yahon deliberately refused to give her spousal support as directed in of Finance Center of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, Camp
Misamis Oriental are directed to respond to any request for the TPO (she claimed that she had no source of livelihood since he Emilio Aguinaldo, Quezon City; the Management of RSBS, Camp
assistance from the petitioner for the implementation of this order. had told her to resign from her job and concentrate on keeping their Emilio Aguinaldo, Quezon City and the Regional Manager of PAG-
They are also directed to accompany the petitioner to their conjugal house), the RTC issued another order directing S/Sgt. Yahon to give IBIG, Mortola St., Cagayan de Oro City for their guidance and strict
abode at Purok 2, Bobuntogan, Jasaan, Misamis Oriental to get her respondent spousal support in the amount of ₱4,000.00 per month compliance.
personal belongings in order to insure the safety of the petitioner. and fifty percent (50%) of his retirement benefits which shall be
SO ORDERED.7 (Emphasis supplied.)
automatically deducted and given directly to respondent.5
The Deputy Sheriff of this Court is ordered to immediately serve the
Temporary Protection Order (TPO) upon the respondent personally Herein petitioner Armed Forces of the Philippines Finance Center
In her testimony, respondent also said that S/Sgt. Yahon never
and to seek and obtain the assistance of law enforcement agents, if (AFPFC), assisted by the Office of the Judge Advocate General
complied with the TPO as he continued making threats and inflicting
needed, for purposes of effecting the smooth implementation of this (OTJAG), AFP, filed before the RTC a Manifestation and Motion (To
physical abuse on her person, and failed to give her spousal support
order. Lift Temporary Protection Order Against the AFP)8 dated November
as ordered by the court.
10, 2008. Stating that it was making a limited and special

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appearance, petitioner manifested that on August 29, 2008, it By Decision dated November 29, 2011, the CA denied the petition for of the respondent to be withheld regularly by the
furnished the AFP Pension and Gratuity Management Center certiorari and affirmed the assailed orders and decision of the RTC. respondent's employer for the same to be automatically
(PGMC) copy of the TPO for appropriate action. The PGMC, on The CA likewise denied petitioner’s motion for reconsideration. remitted directly to the woman. Failure to remit and/or
September 2, 2008, requested the Chief, AFPFC the temporary withhold or any delay in the remittance of support to the
withholding of the thirty-six (36) Months Lump Sum (MLS) due to In this petition, the question of law presented is whether petitioner woman and/or her child without justifiable cause shall
S/Sgt. Yahon. Thereafter, on October 29, 2008, PGMC forwarded a military institution may be ordered to automatically deduct a render the respondent or his employer liable for indirect
letter to the Chief of Staff, AFP for the OTJAG for appropriate action percentage from the retirement benefits of its enlisted personnel, and contempt of court;
on the TPO, and requesting for legal opinion as to the propriety of to give the same directly to the latter’s lawful wife as spousal support
releasing the 36 MLS of S/Sgt. Yahon. Petitioner informed the RTC in compliance with a protection order issued by the RTC pursuant to (h) Prohibition of the respondent from any use or
that S/Sgt. Yahon’s check representing his 36 MLS had been R.A. No. 9262. possession of any firearm or deadly weapon and order
processed and is ready for payment by the AFPFC, but to date said him to surrender the same to the court for appropriate
A protection order is an order issued by the court to prevent further disposition by the court, including revocation of license
check has not been claimed by respondent. acts of violence against women and their children, their family or and disqualification to apply for any license to use or
Petitioner further asserted that while it has initially discharged its household members, and to grant other necessary relief. Its purpose possess a firearm. If the offender is a law enforcement
obligation under the TPO, the RTC had not acquired jurisdiction over is to safeguard the offended parties from further harm, minimize any agent, the court shall order the offender to surrender his
the military institution due to lack of summons, and hence the AFPFC disruption in their daily life and facilitate the opportunity and ability to firearm and shall direct the appropriate authority to
cannot be bound by the said court order. Additionally, petitioner regain control of their life.13 The protection orders issued by the court investigate on the offender and take appropriate action on
contended that the AFPFC is not a party-in-interest and is a complete may be a Temporary Protection Order (TPO) or a Permanent matter;
stranger to the proceedings before the RTC on the issuance of Protection Order (PPO), while a protection order that may be issued
TPO/PPO. Not being impleaded in the case, petitioner lamented that by the barangay shall be known as a Barangay Protection Order (i) Restitution for actual damages caused by the violence
it was not afforded due process and it was thus improper to issue (BPO).14 inflicted, including, but not limited to, property damage,
execution against the AFPFC. Consequently, petitioner emphasized medical expenses, child care expenses and loss of
Section 8 of R.A. No. 9262 enumerates the reliefs that may be income;
its position that the AFPFC cannot be directed to comply with the included in the TPO, PPO or BPO, to wit:
TPO without violating its right to procedural due process. (j) Directing the DSWD or any appropriate agency to
(a) Prohibition of the respondent from threatening to provide petitioner temporary shelter and other social
In its Order9 dated December 17, 2008, the RTC denied the aforesaid commit or committing, personally or through another, any
motion for having been filed out of time. It noted that the September services that the petitioner may need; and
of the acts mentioned in Section 5 of this Act;
28, 2006 TPO and July 23, 2007 Decision granting Permanent (k) Provision of such other forms of relief as the court
Protection Order (PPO) to respondent had long become final and (b) Prohibition of the respondent from harassing, deems necessary to protect and provide for the safety of
executory. annoying, telephoning, contacting or otherwise the petitioner and any designated family or household
communicating with the petitioner, directly or indirectly; member, provided petitioner and any designated family or
Petitioner’s motion for reconsideration was likewise denied under the
RTC’s Order10 dated March 6, 2009. (c) Removal and exclusion of the respondent from the household member consents to such relief. (Emphasis
residence of the petitioner, regardless of ownership of the supplied.)
On May 27, 2009, petitioner filed a petition for certiorari before the CA residence, either temporarily for the purpose of protecting
praying for the nullification of the aforesaid orders and decision Petitioner argues that it cannot comply with the RTC’s directive for
the petitioner, or permanently where no property rights the automatic deduction of 50% from S/Sgt. Yahon’s retirement
insofar as it directs the AFPFC to automatically deduct from S/Sgt. are violated, and if respondent must remove personal
Yahon’s retirement and pension benefits and directly give the same benefits and pension to be given directly to respondent, as it
effects from the residence, the court shall direct a law contravenes an explicit mandate under the law governing the
to respondent as spousal support, allegedly issued with grave abuse enforcement agent to accompany the respondent to the
of discretion amounting to lack of jurisdiction. Respondent filed her retirement and separation of military personnel.
residence, remain there until respondent has gathered his
Comment with Prayer for Issuance of Preliminary Injunction, things and escort respondent from the residence; The assailed provision is found in Presidential Decree (P.D.) No.
manifesting that there is no information as to whether S/Sgt. Yahon 1638,15 which states: Section 31. The benefits authorized under this
already received his retirement benefit and that the latter has (d) Directing the respondent to stay away from petitioner Decree, except as provided herein, shall not be subject to
repeatedly violated the TPO, particularly on the provision of spousal and any designated family or household member at a attachment, garnishment, levy, execution or any tax whatsoever;
support. distance specified by the court, and to stay away from the neither shall they be assigned, ceded, or conveyed to any third
residence, school, place of employment, or any specified person: Provided, That if a retired or separated officer or enlisted man
After due hearing, the CA‘s Twenty-Second Division issued a place frequented by the petitioner and any designated
Resolution11 granting respondent’s application, viz: who is entitled to any benefit under this Decree has unsettled money
family or household member; and/or property accountabilities incurred while in the active service,
Upon perusal of the respective pleadings filed by the parties, the (e) Directing lawful possession and use by petitioner of an not more than fifty per centum of the pension gratuity or other
Court finds meritorious private respondent’s application for the automobile and other essential personal effects, payment due such officer or enlisted man or his survivors under this
issuance of an injunctive relief. While the 36-month lump sum regardless of ownership, and directing the appropriate law Decree may be withheld and be applied to settle such
retirement benefits of S/Sgt. Charles A. Yahon has already been enforcement officer to accompany the petitioner to the accountabilities. (Emphasis supplied.)
given to him, yet as admitted by petitioner itself, the monthly pension residence of the parties to ensure that the petitioner is
after the mentioned retirement benefits has not yet been released to A similar provision is found in R.A. No. 8291, otherwise known as the
safely restored to the possession of the automobile and "Government Service Insurance System Act of 1997," which reads:
him. It appears that the release of such pension could render other essential personal effects, or to supervise the
ineffectual the eventual ruling of the Court in this Petition. petitioner’s or respondent’s removal of personal SEC. 39. Exemption from Tax, Legal Process and Lien -- x x x
IN VIEW OF THE FOREGOING, let a WRIT OF PRELIMINARY belongings;
xxxx
INJUNCTION issue enjoining the Armed Forces of the Philippines (f) Granting a temporary or permanent custody of a
Finance Center, its employees, agents, representatives, and any all child/children to the petitioner; The funds and/or the properties referred to herein as well as the
persons acting on its behalf, from releasing the remaining pension benefits, sums or monies corresponding to the benefits under this Act
that may be due to S/Sgt. Charles A. Yahon. (g) Directing the respondent to provide support to the shall be exempt from attachment, garnishment, execution, levy or
woman and/or her child if entitled to legal support. other processes issued by the courts, quasi-judicial agencies or
12
SO ORDERED. Notwithstanding other laws to the contrary, the court shall administrative bodies including Commission on Audit (COA)
order an appropriate percentage of the income or salary disallowances and from all financial obligations of the members,

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including his pecuniary accountability arising from or caused or they remain in the hands of the disbursing officer of the Government, business or activity, except in cases wherein the other
occasioned by his exercise or performance of his official functions or belong to the latter, although the defendant in garnishment may be spouse/partner objects on valid, serious and moral
duties, or incurred relative to or in connection with his position or work entitled to a specific portion thereof. And still another reason which grounds as defined in Article 73 of the Family Code;
except when his monetary liability, contractual or otherwise, is in covers both of the foregoing is that every consideration of public
favor of the GSIS. policy forbids it.23 2. Deprivation or threat of deprivation of financial
resources and the right to the use and enjoyment of the
In Sarmiento v. Intermediate Appellate Court,16 we held that a court We disagree. conjugal, community or property owned in common;
order directing the Philippine National Bank to refrain from releasing
to petitioner all his retirement benefits and to deliver one-half of such Section 8(g) of R.A. No. 9262 used the general term "employer," 3. Destroying household property;
monetary benefits to plaintiff as the latter’s conjugal share is illegal which includes in its coverage the military institution, S/Sgt. Yahon’s
employer. Where the law does not distinguish, courts should not 4. Controlling the victims' own money or properties or
and improper, as it violates Section 26 of CA 186 (old GSIS Law) solely controlling the conjugal money or properties.28
which exempts retirement benefits from execution. distinguish. Thus, Section 8(g) applies to all employers, whether
private or government. The relief provided in Section 8(g) thus fulfills the objective of
The foregoing exemptions have been incorporated in the 1997 Rules restoring the dignity of women who are victims of domestic violence
of Civil Procedure, as amended, which governs execution of It bears stressing that Section 8(g) providing for spousal and child
support, is a support enforcement legislation.1âwphi1 In the United and provide them continued protection against threats to their
judgments and court orders. Section 13 of Rule 39 enumerates those personal safety and security.
properties which are exempt from execution: States, provisions of the Child Support Enforcement Act24 allow
garnishment of certain federal funds where the intended recipient has "The scope of reliefs in protection orders is broadened to ensure that
SEC. 13. Property exempt from execution.– Except as otherwise failed to satisfy a legal obligation of child support. As these provisions the victim or offended party is afforded all the remedies necessary to
expressly provided by law, the following property, and no other, shall were designed "to avoid sovereign immunity problems" and provide curtail access by a perpetrator to the victim. This serves to safeguard
be exempt from execution: that "moneys payable by the Government to any individual are the victim from greater risk of violence; to accord the victim and any
subject to child support enforcement proceedings," the law is clearly designated family or household member safety in the family
xxxx intended to "create a limited waiver of sovereign immunity so that residence, and to prevent the perpetrator from committing acts that
(l) The right to receive legal support, or money or property obtained state courts could issue valid orders directed against Government jeopardize the employment and support of the victim. It also enables
as such support, or any pension or gratuity from the agencies attaching funds in their possession."25 the court to award temporary custody of minor children to protect the
Government;(Emphasis supplied.) This Court has already ruled that R.A. No. 9262 is constitutional and children from violence, to prevent their abduction by the perpetrator
does not violate the equal protection clause. In Garcia v. Drilon26 the and to ensure their financial support."29
It is basic in statutory construction that in case of irreconcilable
conflict between two laws, the later enactment must prevail, being the issue of constitutionality was raised by a husband after the latter WHEREFORE, the petition is DENIED for lack of merit. The Decision
more recent expression of legislative will.17 Statutes must be so failed to obtain an injunction from the CA to enjoin the implementation dated November 29, 2011 and Resolution dated March 9, 2012 of the
construed and harmonized with other statutes as to form a uniform of a protection order issued against him by the RTC. We ruled that Court of Appeals Mindanao Station in CA-G.R. SP No. 02953-MIN
system of jurisprudence.18 However, if several laws cannot be R.A. No. 9262 rests on real substantial distinctions which justify the are AFFIRMED and UPHELD.
harmonized, the earlier statute must yield to the later enactment. The classification under the law: the unequal power relationship between
later law is the latest expression of the legislative will.19 women and men; the fact that women are more likely than men to be No costs.
victims of violence; and the widespread bias and prejudice against
We hold that Section 8(g) of R.A. No. 9262, being a later enactment, SO ORDERED.
women.
should be construed as laying down an exception to the general rule
above-stated that retirement benefits are exempt from execution. The We further held in Garcia that the classification is germane to the
law itself declares that the court shall order the withholding of a purpose of the law, viz:
percentage of the income or salary of the respondent by the The distinction between men and women is germane to the purpose
employer, which shall be automatically remitted directly to the woman of R.A. 9262, which is to address violence committed against women
"[n]otwithstanding other laws to the contrary." and children, spelled out in its Declaration of Policy, as follows:
Petitioner further contends that the directive under the TPO to SEC. 2. Declaration of Policy.– It is hereby declared that the State
segregate a portion of S/Sgt. Yahon’s retirement benefits was illegal values the dignity of women and children and guarantees full respect
because said moneys remain as public funds, citing the case of for human rights. The State also recognizes the need to protect the
Pacific Products v. Ong.20 In that case, this Court sustained the CA family and its members particularly women and children, from
when it held that the garnishment of the amount of ₱10,500 payable violence and threats to their personal safety and security.
to BML Trading and Supply while it was still in the possession of the
Bureau of Telecommunications was illegal and therefore, null and Towards this end, the State shall exert efforts to address violence
void. The CA therein relied on the previous rulings in Director of committed against women and children in keeping with the
Commerce and Industry v. Concepcion21 and Avendano v. Alikpala, fundamental freedoms guaranteed under the Constitution and the
et al.22 wherein this Court declared null and void the garnishment of provisions of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the
the salaries of government employees. Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against
Women, Convention on the Rights of the Child and other international
Citing the two aforementioned cases, we thus declared in Pacific human rights instruments of which the Philippines is a party.27
Products:
Under R.A. No. 9262, the provision of spousal and child support
A rule, which has never been seriously questioned, is that money in specifically address one form of violence committed against women –
the hands of public officers, although it may be due government economic abuse.
employees, is not liable to the creditors of these employees in the G.R. No. 214880
process of garnishment. One reason is, that the State, by virtue of its D. "Economic abuse" refers to acts that make or attempt to make a
sovereignty may not be sued in its own courts except by express woman financially dependent which includes, but is not limited to the PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Plaintiff-Appellee
authorization by the Legislature, and to subject its officers to following: vs.
garnishment would be to permit indirectly what is prohibited directly. AMANTE PADLAN y LEONES, Accused-Appellant
Another reason is that moneys sought to be garnished, as long as 1. Withdrawal of financial support or preventing the victim
from engaging in any legitimate profession, occupation, DECISION

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DEL CASTILLO, J.: vagina and against her will, thereby badly afecting the psychological vegetables to be resold at a public market in Bulacan. Padlan claimed
and emotional well being of said "AAA". that he returned to the Bulacan public market at about 2:00 a.m. the
This resolves the appeal filed by the appellant Amante Padlan y following morning.
Leones (Padlan) assailing the April 15, 2014 Decision1 of the Court of Contrary to law.6
Appeals (CA) in CA-G.R. CR-H.C. No. 05517 which affirmed with On September 27, 2005 at around 12:00 noon, Padlan claimed that
modifications the November 10, 2011 Joint Decision2 of the Regional When arraigned on October 24, 2005, Padlan pleaded not guilty to all he was resting inside the house of "AAA" after selling vegetables at
Trial Court (RTC) of Malolos City, Branch 18, in Criminal Case Nos. the offenses charged against him. After the pre-trial conference, trial the public market. After about an hour, he took a bath and went back
2755-M- 2005, 2756-M-2005, and 2757-M-2005, finding Padlan guilty on the merits followed. During trial, the prosecution presented the to the market to collect payments from the buyer of his vegetables.
beyond reasonable doubt of two counts of rape and one count of acts testimonies of "AAA" and her mother, "BBB," while the defense He claimed that he collected payments until 12:00 midnight.
of lasciviousness, respectively. presented Padlan.
On September 28, 2005, at around 11 :00 a.m., Padlan rested at
Three Informations were filed against Padlan charging him with two Version of the Prosecution home after selling vegetables. He took a bath, ate, and watched
counts of rape under Article 266-A of the Revised Penal Code (RPC) "AAA" is a nine-year old girl from Meycauayan, Bulacan. She testified television. He claimed that he did not have any encounter with "AAA"
in relation to Republic Act No. 76103 (RA 7610), and one count of that on August 7, 2005, at about 1 :00 p.m., while she was sleeping and that he was surprised to learn that he was being accused of rape.
acts of lasciviousness under Article 336 of the RPC in relation to RA inside their house, she was surprised when Padlan woke her up and After being confronted by "BBB," Padlan insisted that he did not know
7610, allegedly committed as follows: asked her to stand up. "AAA" stood up as she was told. Padlan then anything about the accusations of rape against him.
Criminal Case No. 2755-M-2005 touched her vagina and continued caressing it until he was fully Ruling of the Regional Trial Court
aroused. Thereafter, Padlan took "AAA's" clothes off and undressed
The undersigned Asst. Provincial Prosecutor accuses Amante Padlan himself as well. He told "AAA" to lie down. Padlan then inserted his On November 10, 2011, the RTC of Malolos City, Bulacan, Branch 18
y Leones @ Butog of the crime of Rape penalized under the penis inside "AAA's" vagina. According to "AAA," the insertion of rendered judgment finding Padlan guilty as charged. The RTC was
provisions of Art. 266-A of the Revised Penal Code, as amended by appellant's penis was only for a short time but the insertion was so convinced that the prosecution, through the testimonies of "AAA" and
R.A. 8353 in relation to R.A. 7610, committed as follows: painful that it caused her to shout 'Aray!' Padlan withdrew his penis her mother, was able to establish the guilt of Padlan beyond
and inserted his finger inside "AAA's" vagina instead. "AAA" again reasonable doubt.
That on or about the 7th day of August, 2005, in the municipality of exclaimed in pain, which caused Padlan to remove his finger.
Meycauayan, province of Bulacan, Philippines, and within the Thereafter, "AAA" put her clothes back on. She did not report the The dispositive part of the RTC's Joint Decision reads:
jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, the abovenamed accused, with incident to her mother because of Padlan' s threat to kill her mother if
lewd designs, did then and there willfully, unlawfully and feloniously WHEREFORE, accused Amante L. Padlan, as his guilt in these three
she did. cases has been proven beyond reasonable doubt, is hereby
by means of force and intimidation, have [sic] carnal knowledge of
"AAA," 9 years old, against her will and without her consent and after The second incident occurred in the evening of September 27, 2005 sentenced:
having carnal knowledge of said "AAA" inserted his finger into her when Padlan called "AAA" and told her that her mother, "BBB," a) In Criminal Case No. 2755-M-2005, to suffer reclusion
genital, thereby affecting badly the latter's emotional and wanted her to go to a certain Ate Sharon to borrow money. Padlan perpetua and to pay private victim civil indemnity in the amount of
psychological well being and development. warned "AAA" that "BBB" would spank her if she did not obey her P50,000.00 and moral damages in the amount of ₱50,000.00;
order. Consequently, "AAA" followed Padlan to Ate Sharon's house.
Contrary to law.4 When they reached an aratiles tree along the way, Padlan stopped b) In Criminal Case No. 2756-M-2005, to suffer the penalty
Criminal Case No. 2756-M-2005 "AAA" and told her to lie down on the ground. Padlan then removed of reclusion perpetua and to pay private victim civil indemnity in the
'"AAA's" shorts and underwear and inserted his penis inside her amount of ₱50,000.00 and moral damages in the amount of
The undersigned Asst. Provincial Prosecutor accuses Amante Padlan vagina. After Padlan was finished satisfying his lust, "AAA" went P50,000.00; and
y Leones @ Butog of the crime of Rape penalized under the home by herself. The following day on September 28, 2005, "'AAA"
provisions of Art. 266-A of the Revised Penal Code, as amended by c) In Criminal Case No. 2757-M-2005, to suffer the imprisonment five
was sleeping in her sister's bedroom while her mother was gathering
R.A. 8353 in relation to R.A. 7610, committed as follows: (5) months and eleven (11) days of arresto mayor and two (2) years,
kangkong outs "AAA" was again roused from her sleep when she felt
four (4) months and one (1) day of prision correccional.
Padlan touching and rubbing her vagina. "AAA" quickly ran towards
That on or about the 27th day of September, 2005, in the municipality
of Meycauayan, province of Bulacan, Philippines, and within the
her mother to prevent Padlan from going any further with his SO ORDERED.7
advances.
jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, the abovenamed accused, with Aggrieved by the RTC's Joint Decision, Padlan appealed to the CA.
lewd designs, did then and there willfully, unlawfully and feloniously The next day, "AAA" complained to "BBB" about the pain she felt in
by means of force and intimidation, have carnal knowledge of "AAA," her vagina. "BBB" examined "AAA's" vagina and saw that it was Ruling of the Court of Appeals
9 years old, against her will and without her consent and after having swollen and had pus. When asked who was responsible for her On April 15, 2014, the CA affirmed the RTC's Joint Decision and held
carnal knowledge of said "AAA" inserted his finger into her genital, swollen vagina, "AAA" told her mother about what Padlan had done as follows:
thereby affecting badly the latter's emotional and psychological well to her. "BBB" then confronted Padlan about "AAA's" claims.
being and development. According to "BBB," Padlan admitted that he raped "AAA" twice. WHEREFORE, the appeal is DENED for lack of merit. With the
MODIFICATION increasing the award of civil indemnity and moral
Contrary to law.5 "AAA's" older brother reported the rape incidents to the police. damages to P75,000.00 each, and awarding P30,000.00 as
Padlan was then apprehended by the police authorities while "AAA" exemplary damages in Criminal Case Nos. 2755-M-2005 and 2756-
Criminal Case No. 2757-M-2005
was brought to Camp Crame for a medical examination. M-2005, the Joint Decision dated November 10, 2011 of the Regional
The undersigned Asst. Provincial Prosecutor accuses Amante Padlan Trial Court ofMalolos City, Bulacan, Branch 18, is AFFIRMED in all
"BBB" testified that she knew Padlan because their neighbor, Alvin
y Leones @ Butog of the crime of Acts of Lasciviousness penalized other respects. All monetary awards for damages shall earn interest
Padlan (Alvin), adopted him. When Alvin left for Masbate, he left
under the provisions of Art. 3 3 6 of the Revised Penal Code in at the legal rate of six percent (6%) per annum from the date of
Padlan under her care with a promise that he would get him upon his
relation to R.A. 7610, Sec. 5 (b), committed as follows: finality of this decision until fully paid.
return. As such, Padlan lived with "BBB' s" family since August 15,
That on or about the 28th day of September, 2005, in the municipality 2003 until September 28, 2005 when he was arrested. SO ORDERED.8
of Meycauayan, province of Bulacan, Philippines, and with in the
Version of the Defense Dissatisfied with the CA's Decision, Padlan, through his counsel, filed
jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, the above-named accused, by
means of force ad intimidation, did then and there willfully, unlawfully For his defense, Padlan denied the charge of rape against him and a Notice of Appeal9 dated May 13, 2014 manifesting his intention to
and feloniously, with lewd designs, commit acts of lasciviousness put up the defense of alibi. He claimed that on August 7, 2005, at appeal the CA Decision to this Court.
upon the person of "AAA," a nine (9) year old minor, by touching her around 12:00 noon, he went to Nueva Ecija with his employer to buy

4|Page
In a Resolution10 dated January 12, 2015, this Court directed the September 27, 2005. The relevant portions of her testimony reveal On September 27, 2005 Padlan again succeeded in having sexual
parties to submit their respective supplemental briefs, if they so the following incident on August 7, 2005: intercourse with AAA. She narrated her ordeal as follows:
desired. In its Manifestation11 dated April 15, 2015, the Office of the
Solicitor General (OSG) informed this Court that it was adopting all FISCAL VITUG FISCAL LAGROSA
arguments adduced in its Appellee's Brief dated May 21, 2013 in lieu xxxx xxxx
of filing a Supplemental Brief.
Q: On August 7, 2005, from 1 :00 p.m. onwards, where were you? Q: Now do you know what [sic] the incident that happened on
Likewise, Padlan filed a Manifestation12 dated May 6, 2015, indicating September 27?
that he would no longer file a Supplemental Brief since he had A: I was in our house, ma'am.
already argued all the relevant issues in his Appellant's Brief. A: Yes, ma'am.
xxxx
Issue xxxx
Q: You said you were sleeping at that time, was there any unusual
The lone issue raised by Padlan in his Appellant's Brief is whether the Q: And where did you go?
incident that took place, if any?
trial court erred in finding him guilty of the crimes imputed against him
A: We went to the tree of "Aratiles," Ma'am.
despite the prosecution's failure to prove his guilt beyond reasonable A: There was, ma'am.
doubt. According to Padlan, the prosecution failed to overcome the Q: And what happened at the "Aratiles" tree?
presumption of his innocence. Padlan challenges the credibility of Q: What is this incident you are referring to?
"AAA" and insists that he was in a different place at the time the A: We stopped there, Ma'am.
A: He woke me up and asked me to stand up, ma'am.
alleged crimes were committed. Padlan thus prays for his acquittal. Q: And what did you do when you stopped?
xxxx
Our Ruling A: He removed my panty and my shorts, Ma'am.
Q: You said "Ginising po nya ako at pinatayo ako," who are you
The appeal lacks merit. Q: And after he removed your panty and your shorts, what happened
referring to? next?
After a careful review of the records of the case, the Court finds no
cogent reason to depart from the findings of both the RTC and CA A: Amante Padlan, ma'am. A: He drew out his penis, Ma'am.
that the prosecution was able to sufficiently prove beyond a
reasonable doubt all the elements of the crimes of rape and acts of xxxx Q: After he drew out his penis, what happened?
lasciviousness. The Court affirms the Decision of the CA finding Pad] Q: Do you know Amante Padlan? A: He inserted his penis into my private part, Ma' am.17
an guilty of two counts of rape and one count of acts of
lasciviousness, but with modifications on the penalty imposed and A: Yes, ma'am. Further, "AAA" testified that on September 28, 2005, while she was
amount of damages awarded. asleep, she felt someone touching her vagina.1avvphi1Upon opening
Q: How long have you known him?
Under Article 266-A of the RPC, rape is committed by having carnal her eyes, "AAA" saw that it was Padlan who was touching her
A: When he lived in our house, ma'am. vagina.18
knowledge of a woman under any of the following circumstances:
xxxx As shown by "AAA's" testimony, she was able to narrate in a clear
1. By using force, threat, or intimidation;
and candid manner how Padlan raped and molested her. Being a 9-
Q: Then what happened next, if any?
2. When the offended party is deprived of reason or year old rape victim, her testimony deserves full weight and
otherwise unconscious; A: He asked me to stand up and touched my vagina, ma'am. credence. "[A] girl of tender years, who barely understands sex and
sexuality, is unlikely to impute to any man a crime so serious as rape,
3. By means of fraudulent machination or grave abuse of xxxx if what she claims is not true."19 Moreover, the defense did not
authority; and present any improper motive on "AAA" why she would impute a
Q: Aside from touching your vagina, what else did he do next, if any?
4. When the offended party is under twelve (12) years serious charge of rape against Padlan. Verily, we affirm the CA that
of age or is demented, even though none of the A: He asked me to remove my dress then he put out his penis and all the elements of Rape and Acts of Lasciviousness had been
circumstances mentioned above be present. asked me to lie down and tried to insert his penis into my vagina, proven in the case at bar.
ma'am.
In People v. Gutierrez,13 the Court held that there is statutory rape Besides, the RTC found that "AAA's" testimony was credible since it
when: "(1) the offended party is under [twelve] years of age[;] and (2) xxxx was given in a categorical, straightforward, spontaneous, and frank
the accused has carnal knowledge of her, regardless of whether manner despite her young age.20 We find no compelling reason to
Q: How long did he insert his penis into your vagina?
there was force, threat or intimidation; whether the victim was deviate from these findings especially since the CA affirmed the
deprived of reason or consciousness; or whether it was done through A: 1 1/2, ma'am. same. The finding of credibility should not be overturned since the
fraud or grave abuse of authority. It is enough that the age of the trial court judge had the opportunity to personally examine the
COURT demeanor of the witnesses when they testified on the stand. The
victim is proven and that there was sexual intercourse."
finding of credibility may be overturned only when certain facts or
Q: 1 1/2 what, in tem1s of minutes or hours?
In the present case, all the elements of statutory rape have been circumstances are overlooked, misunderstood, or misapplied, and the
sufficiently established in Criminal Case Nos. 2755-M-2005 and A: Oras po, Your Honor.15 same could have materially affected the outcome of the case. No
2756-M- 2005 since the prosecution's evidence showed that on two such circumstance is present in the case at bar. Thus, the finding for
separate occasions, Padlan had carnal knowledge of"AAA," a woman xxxx "AAA's" credibility stands.
under 12 years of age. The defense did not dispute the fact that Q: Now after you said "aray" and he stopped. What else happened?
"AAA" was nine years old at the time of the incident. Her birth For his defense, Padlan denied the charges against him and
certificate, which was presented during trial before the RTC, clearly A: He inserted his finger, ma'am. presented an alibi. He contended that on the dates when the rape
stated that her date of birth is August 20, 1996.14 and acts of lasciviousness were alleged to have been committed, he
Q: Where did he insert his finger? was either in Nueva Ecija buying vegetables for resale in Bulacan,
During her direct examination, "AAA" categorically stated that Padlan collecting payments from his buyers at the market and resting at
inserted his penis into her vagina on August 7, 2005 and again on A: He inserted his finger into my vagina, ma'am.16
home thereafter, or watching television at home. These are all
uncorroborated self-serving statements. Time and again, the Court

5|Page
has held that denial and alibi are inherently weak defenses that To be held liable for lascivious conduct under Sec. 5(b), Art. III of RA may be: Provided, That the penalty for lascivious conduct when
cannot prevail over the positive and categorical testimony and 7610, the following elements of Acts of Lasciviousness under Art. 336 the victim is under twelve (12) years of age shall be reclusion
identification of the complainant.21 Moreover, for alibi to prosper, it is of the RPC must be me temporal in its medium period; x x x
insufficient that the accused prove that he was somewhere else when
the crime was committed; he must likewise establish that it was 1. That the offender commits any act of lasciviousness or lewdness; In People v. Aycardo,27 the Court explained that a child need not be
physically impossible for him to have been present at the scene of the exploited in prostitution for the provisions of RA 7 610 to apply:
2. That it is done under any of the following circumstances:
crime at the time of its commission. Section 5 (b), Article III of R.A. No. 7610 punishes sexual intercourse
a) Through force, threat or intimidation; or lascivious conduct not only with a child exploited in prostitution, but
In this case, while Padlan alleged that on August 7, 2005 he was in
Nueva Ecija with his employer buying vegetables, Padlan failed to b) When the offended party is deprived of reason or otherwise also with a child subjected to other sexual abuses. It covers not only
present the testimony of such employer. Consequently, his claim unconscious; a situation where a child is abused for profit, but also where one -
remained uncorroborated and unsubstantiated. As such, in the face through coercion, intimidation or influence - engages in sexual
c) By means of fraudulent machination or grave abuse of authority; intercourse or lascivious conduct with a child. Thus, a child is deemed
of the accusation against him, his alibi cannot prevail over the
positive testimony of "AAA." Moreover, the distance alone from subjected to other sexual abuse when he or she indulges in
d) When the offended party is under twelve (12) years of age or is
Meycauayan, Bulacan to Nueva Ecija does not conclusively prove lascivious conduct under the coercion or influence of any adult.
demented, even though none of the circumstances mentioned above
that it was physically impossible for Padlan to go to Nueva Ecija and be present.1âwphi1 It is clear from the above that "AAA" need not be a child exploited in
still return to Bulacan to commit the crime of rape. "Physical prostitution for money or profit in order for the provisions of RA 7160
impossibility refers not only to the geographical distance between the 3. That the offended party is another person of either sex.25 In
to apply. As long as a child is subjected to sexual abuse, either by
place where the accused was and the place where the crime was addition to the elements under Art. 336 of the RPC, the following
engaging in sexual intercourse or lascivious conduct, the penalty
committed when the crime transpired, but more importantly, the requisites for sexual abuse under Sec. 5(b), Art. III of RA 7610, must
under Sec. 5 (b), Art. III of RA 7610 shall be the proper imposable
facility of access between the two places."22 also be established to wit:
penalty.
Further, Padlan testified that on September 27-28, 2005, he was 1. The accused commits the act of sexual intercourse or lascivious
In Olivarez v. Court of Appeals,28 the Court held:
resting inside the house of "AAA's" family after selling vegetables at conduct.
the public market. Instead of removing himself from the locus Thus a child is deemed subjected to other sexual abuse when the
2. The said act is performed with a child exploited in prostitution or
criminis, his testimony placed him squarely at the very scene of the child indulges in lascivious conduct under the coercion or influence of
subjected to other sexual abuse.
crime or its immediate vicinity. Thus, in the face of "AAA's" positive any adult. In this case, Cristina was sexually abused because she
identification of Padlan as her rapist, we reject Padlan's defense of 3. The child, whether male or female, is below 18 years of age. 26 was coerced or intimidated by petitioner to indulge in a lascivious
alibi. conduct. Furthermore, it is inconsequential that the sexual abuse
In the present case, the Infonnation in Criminal Case No. 2757-M- occurred on once. As expressly provided in Section 3 (b) of R.A.
The Court, however, disagrees with the RTC and the CA with regard 2005 specifically stated: (1) that "AAA" was a nine-year old minor at 7610, the abuse may be habitual or not. It must be observed that
to the imposition of penalty for the crime of Acts of Lasciviousness in the time of the incident; and (2) that Padlan committed acts of Article III of R.A. 7 610 is captioned as "Child Prostitution and Other
Criminal Case No. 2757-M-2005. The RTC, as affirmed by the CA, lasciviousness against "AAA" by touching her vagina. Contrary to the Sexual Abuse" because Congress really intended to cover a situation
imposed the penalty of imprisonment of five (5) months and eleven ruling of the RTC which was affirmed by the CA, we find that the where the minor may have been coerced or intimidated into
(11) days of arresto mayor as minimum and two (2) years, .four (4) elements of lascivious conduct under Sec. 5(b), Art. III of RA 7610 lascivious conduct, not necessarily for money or profit. The law
months, and one (1) day of prision correccional as maximum have been sufficiently alleged in the Information and duly proven covers not only child prostitution but also other forms of sexual
pursuant to the provisions of Art. 336 of the RPC. The RTC did not during trial. abuse. x x x
apply the penalty prescribed by Sec. 5(b), Art. III of RA 7610 since
according to the RTC, "the informations did not particularly allege Sec. 2(h), of the Implementing Rules and Regulations of RA 7610 Accordingly, a modification of the penalty imposed by the RTCin
what particular Section of R.A. 7610 ha[d] been violated by the defines lascivious conduct as: Criminal Case No. 2757-M-2005 is in order.
accused."23 [T]he intentional touching, either directly or through clothing, of the The proper imposable penalty for acts of lasciviousness under the
We disagree with the RTC. genitalia, anus, groin, breast, inner thigh, or buttocks, or the circumstances is reclusion temporal in its medium period which
introduction of any object into the genitalia, anus or mouth, of any ranges from fourteen (14) years, eight (8) months, and one (1) day to
A plain reading of the accusatory portion of the Information in person, whether of the same or opposite sex, with an intent to abuse, seventeen (17) years and four (4) months.
Criminal Case No. 2757-M-2005 reads: humiliate, harass, degrade, or arouse or gratify the sexual desire of
any person, bestiality, masturbation, lascivious exhibition of the The Indeterminate Sentence Law (ISL) provides that if the offense is
INFORMATION genitals or pubic area of a person. (Emphasis supplied) punished under a special law, as in this case, the maximum term
The undersigned Asst. Provincial Prosecutor accuses Amante Padlan shall not exceed the maximum fixed by said law and the minimum
More importantly, Sec. 5(b), Art. III of RA 7610 specifically states the shall not be less than the minimum term prescribed by the
y Leones @ Butog of the crime of Acts of Lasciviousness penalized following:
under the provisions of Art. 336 of the Revised Penal Code same. 29 Nonetheless, the Court had already held in People v.
in relation to R.A. 7610, Sec. 5 (b), committed as follows: Section 5. Child Prostitution and Other Sexual Abuse. - Children, Simon30 that when an offense is defined in a special law but the
whether male or female, who for money, profit, or. any other penalty therefor is taken from the technical nomenclature in the RPC,
That on or about the 28th day of September, 2005, in the municipality consideration or due to the coercion or influence of any adult, the legal effects under the system of penalties native to the Code
of Meycauayan, province of Bulacan, Philippines, and within the syndicate or group, indulge in sexual intercourse or lascivious would necessarily apply to the special law. Thus, in People v.
jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, the abovenamed accused, by conduct, are deemed to be children exploited in prostitution and other Santos,31 which also involved a case of acts of lasciviousness under
means of force and intimidation, did then and there willfully, sexua:l abuse. Sec. 5 (b ), Art. III of RA 7610, the Court held that in the absence of
unlawfully and feloniously, with lewd designs, commit acts of mitigating or aggravating circumstances, the minimum term shall be
lasciviousness upon the person of AAA, a nine (9) year old minor, by xxxx taken from the penalty one degree lower to the prescribed penalty of
touching her vagina and against her will, thereby badly affecting the reclusion temporal medium, that is reclusion temporal minimum,
psychological and emotional well being of said AAA. (b) Those who commit the act of sexual intercourse or lascivious which ranges from twelve (12) years, ten (10) months and twenty-one
conduct with a child exploited in prostitution or subjected to other (21) days to fourteen (14) years and eight (8) months, while the
24
Contrary to law. (Emphasis supplied) sexual abuse; Provided, That when the victim is under twelve (12) maximum shall be taken from the medium period of the imposable
years of age, the perpetrators shall be prosecuted under Article 335, penalty, that is reclusion temporal medium, which ranges from fifteen
paragraph 3, for rape and Article 336 of Act No. 3815, as amended, (15) years, six (6) months and twenty (20) days to sixteen (16) years,
the Revised Penal Code, for rape or lascivious conduct, as the case five (5) months and nine (9) days.
6|Page
Applying the foregoing, in Criminal Case No. 2757-M-2005, Padlan is Sometime in April 2011, AAA went with accused-appellant, whom she
hereby sentenced to an indeterminate penalty of imprisonment of called CCC, to the YYY Camp, Sitio XXX, to buy some bananas.
twelve (12) years, ten (10) months and twenty-one (21) days of Accused-appellant would buy bananas everyday and AAA helped him
reclusion temporal, as minimum, to fifteen (15) years, six (6) months in selling banana cue as she was still on vacation from school.
and twenty (20) days of reclusion temporal, as maximum.
Furthermore, Padlan is ordered to pay the victim, "AAA," the amounts While on their way to the YYY Camp, accused-appellant suddenly
of ₱20,000.00 as civil indemnity; ₱15,000.00 as moral damages; G.R. No. 228887, August 02, 2017 dragged AAA towards the grassy portion of a vacant lot. Then and
₱15,000.00 as exemplary damages; and a fine of ₱15,000.00 in line PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Plaintiff-Appellee, v. DOMINADOR there, he had carnal knowledge with AAA by inserting his penis inside
with prevailing jurisprudence.32 UDTOHAN Y JOSE, Accused-Appellant. her vagina. After satisfying his lust, accused-appellant pushed AAA
out of the road and proceeded to buy some bananas. He threatened
Finally, as to the award of damages in Criminal Case Nos. 2755-M- DECISION AAA that should she tell anyone about the incident, he would eject
2005 and 2756-M-2005 for the crime of rape, the Court increases the her family from his house and he would not feed them. Subsequently,
same in line with the rule enunciated in People v. Jugueta,33 where MENDOZA, J.:
accused-appellant would sexually abuse AAA almost every day at the
the Court held that in the crime of rape where the imposable penalty same place.
On appeal is the May 30, 2016 Decision1 of the Court of Appeals
is reclusion perpetua, the proper amounts of damages should be
(CA) in CA-G.R. CR-HC No. 06944, which affirmed the June 26, 2014
₱75,000.00 as civil indemnity, ₱75,000.00 as moral damages and Later, on September 11, 2011, at around 10:00 o'clock in the
Decision2 of the Regional Trial Court, Branch 69, Taguig City (RTC)
₱75,000.00 as exemplary damages. Hence in Criminal Case Nos. evening, at the house of accused-appellant, he molested AAA by
in Criminal Case Nos. 146314-15, finding accused-appellant
2755-M-2005 and 2756-M-2005, where Padlan was convicted of two caressing and touching her vagina. AAA did not tell anyone about
Dominador Udtohan y Jose (accused-appellant) guilty beyond
(2) counts of rape and sentenced to reclusion perpetua, the Court accused-appellant's bestial acts against her because she was afraid
reasonable doubt of the crimes of Statutory Rape under Article 266-A
further modifies the award of exemplary damages to ₱75,000.00. that the latter would evict them and kill her.
(1) (d) of the Revised Penal Code (RPC) and Violation of Section 5
WHEREFORE, the April 15, 2014 Decision of the Court of Appeals in (b) of Republic Act (R.A.) No. 7610.
CA-G.R. CR-H.C. No. 05517 is AFFIRMED with FURTHER On the following day, when AAA was at school, she revealed her
MODIFICATIONS as follows: In two (2) Informations,3 dated September 13, 2011, accused- ordeal to her teacher who was then suspicious of her odd behavior.
appellant was charged as follows: On that same day, accused-appellant's live-in-partner disclosed to
1. In Criminal Case Nos. 2755-M-2005 and 2756-M-2005, BBB that she saw him insert his finger into AAA's vagina. BBB
appellant Amante Padlan is found guilty beyond CRIMINAL CASE NO. 146314 immediately went to AAA's school to verify the information. Thereat,
reasonable doubt of two counts of rape as defined under BBB sought the help of AAA's teacher and they went to
Article 266-A (l)(d) and penalized under Article 266- B of That, in the month of April 2011, in the City of Taguig, Philippines and the barangay to lodge a complaint. The barangay referred them to the
the Revised Penal Code. Appellant Amante Padlan is within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, the above-named police station.
sentenced to suffer the penalty of imprisonment accused, being then the paternal uncle of AAA, a minor, 11 years old,
of reclusion perpetua and is ordered to pay the victim, by means of violence and intimidation and with lewd designs and Thereafter, they proceeded to the PNP Crime Laboratory in Camp
"AAA," the increased amounts of ₱75,000.00 as civil intent to gratify his sexual desire, did, then and there wilfully, Crame wherein PCI Shane Lore Detaballi (PCI Detaballi) conducted a
indemnity; ₱75,000.00 as moral damages; and unlawfully and feloniously have sexual intercourse with said victim genital examination and found the presence of deep-healed
₱75,000.00 as exemplary damages, all with interest at the against her will and consent, to her damages and prejudice. lacerations at the 3, 6 and 9 o'clock positions in AAA's hymen,
rate of 6% per annum from the date of finality of this showing blunt penetrating trauma. AAA then gave her sworn
Decision until fully paid. CONTRARY TO LAW. statement before the Women and Children Protection Desk to confirm
the veracity of her allegations.
2. In Criminal Case No. 2757-M-2005, appellant Amante
Padlan is found guilty of Acts of Lasciviousness as CRIMINAL CASE NO. 146315
Evidence of the Defense
defined under Article 336 of the Revised Penal Code in
relation to, and penalized under Section 5(b), Article III of That, on or about the 11th day of September 2011, in the City of
Taguig, Philippines and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, On the other hand, the defense presented accused-appellant as its
Republic Act No. 7610. Appellant Amante Padlan is
the above-named accused, being then the paternal uncle of AAA, a sole witness. He vehemently denied the accusations against him.
sentenced to suffer the indeterminate penalty of
minor, 11 years old, by means of violence and intimidation and with Instead, he claimed that the charges were fabricated by BBB, AAA's
imprisonment of twelve (12) years, ten (10) months and
lewd designs and with intent to gratify his sexual desire, did, then and mother, because she was mad and angry at DDD, her husband and
twenty-one (21) days of reclusion temporal, as minimum,
there wilfully, unlawfully and feloniously commit lascivious conduct brother of accused-appellant. He also added that BBB was coaching
to fifteen (15) years, six (6) months and twenty (20) days
with said victim, against her will and consent, by then and there her children to testify against him and that she threatened to
of reclusion temporal, as maximum. He is further ordered
inserting his finger inside her vagina, which are acts prejudicial to the physically harm them should they refuse to follow her.
to pay the victim, "AAA," the amounts of ₱20,000.00 as
civil indemnity; ₱15,000.00 as moral damages; normal growth and development as a child.
The RTC Ruling
₱15,000.00 as exemplary damages; and a fine of
₱15,000.00, all with interest at the rate of 6% per CONTRARY TO LAW.4
On October 18, 2011, accused-appellant was arraigned and he In a Decision, dated June 26, 2014, the RTC found accused-
annum from the date of finality of this Decision until fully
pleaded "not guilty." Thereafter, trial ensued. appellant guilty beyond reasonable doubt of statutory rape under
paid.
Article 266-A (1) (d) of the RPC and violation of Section 5 (b) of R.A.
SO ORDERED. Evidence of the Prosecution No. 7610. It found that AAA was born on October 7, 1999, as shown
by in her birth certificate, and that she was eleven (11) years old
The testimonies of the prosecution's witnesses tended to establish when the two separate sexual abuses occurred. The trial court held
that AAA, who was then eleven (11) years old, together with her that the testimony of AAA was clear, candid, straightforward, and
mother, BBB, and two (2) siblings, stayed for free in the house of her convincing regarding the sexual abuses she suffered at the hands of
paternal uncle, accused-appellant herein, located at Block 5, XXX her uncle. The RTC also ruled that the medico-legal certificate
Street, Sitio XXX, Western XXX, XXX. Because AAA's father, DDD, corroborated the testimony of AAA. The RTC disposed the case in
was in jail for murder, accused-appellant helped BBB in taking care of this wise:chanRoblesvirtualLawlibrary
her children. WHEREFORE, finding Dominador Udtohan y Jose guilty beyond
reasonable doubt of Statutory Rape and violation of Sec. 5(b) R.A.
7610, this court hereby sentences him as follows:
7|Page
occurrence or event that happened since the filing of the appellee's A: Kasi po ni-rape po niya ako.
In Crim. Case No. 146314 to suffer the penalty of Reclusion Perpetua brief.
and to pay AAA Php75,000.00 as civil indemnity, Php75,000.00 as Q: You said you were rape (sic), how many times?
moral damages and Php30,000.00 as exemplary damages; and A: Two po.
The Court's Ruling
In Crim. Case No. 146315 to suffer the penalty of 12 years and 1 day Q: AAA, when was the first time?
The appeal lacks merit.
of Reclusion Temporal in its minimum period, as minimum, to 15 A: April 2011, Sir.
years and 6 months of Reclusion Temporal in its medium period, as
Section 5 (b) of R.A. No. 7610 provides:chanRoblesvirtualLawlibrary
maximum; and to pay AAA Php50,000.00 as civil indemnity, Q: About what time?
(b) Those who commit the act of sexual intercourse of lascivious
Php50,000.00 as moral damages and Php30,000.00 as exemplary A: 3:00 P.M.
conduct with a child exploited in prostitution or subject to other sexual
damages.
abuse; Provided, That when the victim is under twelve (12) years
Q: Where did this happen?
of age, the perpetrators shall be prosecuted under Article 335,
SO ORDERED.5 A: At the YYY Camp, Sir.
paragraph 3, for rape and Article 336 of Act No. 3815, as
Aggrieved, accused-appellant elevated an appeal to the CA. He
amended, the Revised Penal Code, for rape or lascivious
argued that the testimony of AAA was not credible because there Q: What were you doing at YYY Camp, Sitio XXX at that time?
conduct, as the case may be: Provided, That the penalty for
were diverging statements regarding the number of incidents of rape A: We were about to buy bananas, Sir.
lascivious conduct when the victim is under twelve (12) years of
he allegedly committed.
age shall be reclusion temporal in its medium period;[Emphasis
Q: You said "kami" who was with you?
supplied]
The CA Ruling A: Tito CCC, sir.
As stated above, when the victim of rape or acts of lasciviousness is
below twelve (12) years old, the offender shall be prosecuted under
In its assailed Decision, dated May 30, 2016, the CA denied the Q: So what happened while you were going out to buy bananas?
the RPC, provided that the penalty for lascivious conduct shall
appeal. It held that the testimony of AAA regarding the two sexual A: He pulled me in the grassy portion, Sir.
be reclusion temporal in its medium period.
abuses was clear and convincing. The CA underscored that AAA was
able to describe each incident of rape and sexual abuse committed xxxx
Statutory rape is committed by sexual intercourse with a woman
by her uncle, accused-appellant. Also, it did not give weight to the
below 12 years of age regardless of her consent, or the lack of it, to
self-serving denial of accused-appellant and his claim that AAA's Q: AAA you said that you were rape? (sic)
the sexual act. Proof of force, intimidation or consent is unnecessary
mother, who was mad at his brother, initiated the charges. The CA A:Opo
as they are not elements of statutory rape, considering that the
added that accused-appellant miserably failed to establish the ill-will
absence of free consent is conclusively presumed when the victim is
or motive of AAA or her mother. Q: What happened to your private parts if any?
below the age of 12.11 Moreover, under Article 266-B of the RPC,
The fallo reads:chanRoblesvirtualLawlibrary A: Nasira po.
there is qualified rape when the victim is below 18 years of age and
WHEREFORE, the appeal is DENIED. The Decision dated June 26,
the offender is a parent, ascendant, step-parent, guardian, relative by
2014 of the Regional Trial Court of XXX City, Branch 69, is Q: Ipinakita ko sa iyo ito ay...ano ang tingin mo dito manika?
consanguinity or affinity within the third civil degree, or the common-
hereby AFFIRMED with the MODIFICATION in that, interest at the A: Opo.
law spouse of the parent of the victim.12
legal rate of six percent (6%) per annum, shall be imposed on the
total monetary awards in the appealed decision until the same are Q: Ngayon, ito ay manika at ang nirerepresent ng manika na ito
On the other hand, acts of lasciviousness under the RPC has the
fully paid. ay...ano ba ang tingin mo dito mukha ba siyang lalaki or babae?
following elements: that the offender commits any act of
A: Lalaki po.
lasciviousness or lewdness; that it is done by using force or
SO ORDERED.6
intimidation, or when the offended party is deprived of reason or
Hence, this appeal. Q: So itong lalaki na ito may mukha, may kamay at paa, meron ding
otherwise unconscious; or when the offended party is under 12 years
ISSUES siyang katulad noong nasa lalaki...maari mo bang ituro sa amin kung
of age; and that the offended party is another person of either sex.13
ano ang ginamit niya?
I After a judicious scrutiny of the records, the Court finds that accused-
AAA pointed to the private part of the anatomically correct doll.
appellant is guilty of qualified rape and acts of lasciviousness under
the RPC in relation to Section 5 (b) of R.A. No. 7610.
THE TRIAL COURT GRAVELY ERRED IN GIVING CREDENCE TO PROSECUTOR DE DIOS:
THE PRIVATE COMPLAINANT'S TESTIMONY.
The testimony of AAA showed that the she was able to establish with
Your Honor, can I unbare?
clear and candid detail her age at the time of the incident, the identity
II of accused-appellant, her relationship with him, and the specific
COURT:
bestial acts committed by him, to wit:chanRoblesvirtualLawlibrary
Q: Who are you complaining against?
THE TRIAL COURT GRAVELY ERRED IN FINDING ACCUSED- Yes pero dahan-dahan lang baka magulat si AAA.
A: Tito CCC, Sir.
APPELLANT GUILTY BEYOND REASONABLE DOUBT OF THE
CRIME CHARGED DESPITE THE PROSECUTION'S FAILURE TO Q: AAA, this doll is representing a male person. Now a male person
Q: Do you see Tito CCC in the premises?
OVERTHROW THE CONSTITUTIONAL PRESUMPTION OF has its own private parts. I'd like to show to you a depiction of such
A: None, Sir.
INNOCENCE IN HIS FAVOR.7 private part, is that okay with you?
In a Resolution,8 dated February 27, 2017, the Court required the A: Opo.
Q: If you will go out, will you be able to identify him?
parties to submit their respective supplemental briefs, if they so
A: Yes, Sir.
desired. In his Manifestation in Lieu of Supplemental Brief,9 dated Q: I'd like to show to you this portion of the doll, now what do you
April 5, 2017, accused-appellant manifested that he was adopting his know about this portion? Ano ito?
Q: Please go out?
appellant's brief filed before the CA as his supplemental brief. In its
A: Witness pointed to a male man wearing yellow t-shirt when asked
Manifestation in Lieu of Supplemental Brief,10 dated April 12, 2017, COURT:
for his name, he answered CCC.
the Office of the Solicitor General (OSG) stated that it was no longer Q: Ano ba ang alam mo na tawag sa ganyan? Alam mo ba?
filing a supplemental brief, there being no significant transaction, A: Opo.
Q: AAA, why are you suing Tito CCC?

8|Page
Q: Ano ang tawag diyan, alam mo ba? Qualified Rape Section 5 Article III of R.A. No. 7610 provides that when the victim is
A: Witness just pointed the private parts of the anatomical (sic) under 12 years of age, the perpetrators shall be prosecuted under the
correct doll It is apparent from the testimony of AAA that she suffered sexual RPC, but the penalty shall be that provided in R.A. No.
abuses at the hands of accused-appellant, her own uncle. The first 7610.19 Lascivious conduct is defined as "[t]he intentional touching,
PROSECUTOR DE DIOS: instance occurred in April 2011, on their way to Camp YYY to buy either directly or through clothing, of the genitalia, anus, groin, breast,
bananas when accused-appellant pushed AAA to the grassy portion inner thigh, or buttocks, or the introduction of any object into the
Q: AAA, am I correct to say that this was the part of the body used by and raped her. Despite her tender age and traumatizing experience, genitalia, anus or mouth of any person, whether of the same or
Tito CCC in raping you? AAA was able to describe in open court, through an anatomically opposite sex, with an intent to abuse, humiliate, harass, degrade or
A: Opo. correct doll, that accused-appellant used and inserted his penis in her arouse or gratify the sexual desire of any person, bestiality,
vagina which caused her tremendous pain and injuries. masturbation, lascivious exhibition of the genitals or pubic area of a
Q: Now, on September 11, 2011, you also said that you were person."20
molested by Tito CCC, what time? After satisfying his lust, accused-appellant warned her not to relate
A: 10:00 P.M. the incident to anybody, otherwise, he would evict her family and he In this case, the conduct of accused-appellant in intentionally
would kill her. Evidently, accused-appellant used threats and touching and caressing the genitals of AAA constituted an act of
Q: Where did this happen? intimidation against AAA, which caused her to suffer silently in fear lasciviousness. He must be punished under the prescribed penalty of
A: Sa bahay po. until she finally disclosed her ordeal to her teacher. Further, AAA was R.A. No. 7610 as AAA was below 12 years of age at the time of the
only eleven (11) years old at the time of the rape incident, as incident. The aggravating circumstance of relationship must also be
Q: Now, AAA you said that you were molested, how were you evidenced by her birth certificate. taken into consideration.
molested by Tito CCC exactly?
The Court does not give credence to accused-appellant's argument Denial is a weak defense
COURT: that AAA's testimony was incredible because there were inconsistent
statements regarding the frequency of the abuses. Inconsistencies in Accused-appellant interposed a defense of denial by vehemently
Q: Gusto mo bang gamitin ulit or ituro...bibigay ko ulit ang doll kay the testimony of the victim do not necessarily render such testimony denying the accusations against him. It is an established rule,
Prosec.dito mo na lang ituro kung ano ang ginamit sa iyo o may incredible. In fact, minor inconsistencies strengthen the credibility of however, that denial is an inherently weak defense and constitutes
ginamit o anong parte ng katawan? the witness and the testimony, because of a showing that such self-serving negative evidence, which cannot be accorded greater
charges are not fabricated. What is decisive in a charge of rape is the evidentiary weight than the positive declaration by a credible
PROSECUTOR DE DIOS: complainant's positive identification of the accused as the witness.21
malefactor.15
Q: May ginamit ba si Tito CCC anong parte ng...katawan? Indeed, the positive testimony of AAA outweighs the denial proffered
A: Kamay po. Testimonies of rape victims who are young and of tender age are by accused-appellant. Mere denial, without any strong evidence to
credible. The revelation of an innocent child whose chastity was support it, can scarcely overcome the positive declaration by the
Q: So what did he do with his hands to your persons? abused deserves full credence.16 It is a well-settled rule that factual child-victim of the identity of the accused and his involvement in the
A: Hinipo niya ako. findings of the trial court, especially on the credibility of the rape crime attributed to him.22
victim, are accorded great weight and respect and will not be
Q: AAA, with the use of Tito CCC's hands, where did he touch you? disturbed on appeal.17 Moreover, accused-appellant's assertion that the charges were
A: Sa ari ko po. merely instituted by BBB because she was mad or angry with DDD,
Moreover, the medico-legal report corroborated the testimony of AAA. his brother, was utterly unsubstantiated. Motives such as resentment,
xxxx It showed the presence of deep-healed lacerations at the 3, 6 and 9 hatred or revenge have never swayed this Court from giving full
o'clock positions in AAA's hymen, showing blunt penetrating trauma. credence to the testimony of a minor rape victim.23 Evidently, no
Q: Do you have any proof AAA to show us that you were indeed born Time and again, the Court held that the slightest penetration of the woman, least of all a child, would concoct a story of defloration, allow
on October 7, 1999? labia of the female victim's genitalia consummates the crime of examination of her private parts and subject herself to public trial or
A: Opo. rape.18 ridicule if she has not, in truth, been a victim of rape and impelled to
seek justice for the wrong done to her being.24
Q: I'd like to show to you certificate of live birth, is this your certificate Nevertheless, the crime committed by accused-appellant must be
of live birth? qualified under Article 266-B of the RPC. It was indicated in the Penalties
A: Opo. Informations that accused-appellant was the paternal uncle of AAA.
Also, during trial, AAA positively identified accused-appellant as her In Criminal Case No. 146314, the crime committed was qualified rape
xxxx uncle and she established that it was her uncle who raped her. There under Paragraph 6(1), Article 266-B of the RPC and the imposable
is qualified rape when the victim is below 18 years of age and the penalty is death. With the enactment of R.A. No. 9346, however, the
Q: I noticed the first molestation was on (sic) April 2011 and the offender is an ascendant or relative by consanguinity or affinity within imposition of the death penalty is prohibited and the proper penalty
second was on (sic) September 2011, from April up to September the third civil degree. In this case, accused-appellant, the paternal would be reclusion perpetua without the benefit of parole.
why did you not tell anyone that you were subject of the molestation? uncle of AAA, was a relative by consanguinity within the third civil
A: Natakot po ako. degree. Hence, the crime of qualified rape was committed by In Criminal Case No. 146315, the crime committed was acts of
accused-appellant. lasciviousness. As the victim was below 12 years of age, the penalty
Q: Who are you afraid of? provided under Section 5 (b) of R.A. No. 7610, reclusion temporal in
A: Kay Tito CCC po. Acts of Lasciviousness its medium period, must be imposed. Further, the aggravating
circumstance of relationship between the accused-appellant and AAA
Q: So why are you afraid of Tito CCC? Aside from the qualified rape committed by accused-appellant, AAA is present. Thus, the Court finds that the proper imposable penalty is
A: Baka po kasi palayasin kami at patayin ako. testified positively that he also sexually molested her. She stated that 12 years and 1 day of reclusion temporal in its minimum period, as
on September 11, 2011, at his house, around 10:00 o'clock in the minimum, to 16 years, 5 months and 10 days of reclusion temporal in
Q: You said "baka" why did you say that you might be evicted or evening, the accused-appellant touched and caressed her genitals. its medium period, as maximum.25
killed? Why do you say that? This was confirmed by his live-in-partner when she reported the
A: Kasi iyon po ang sinabi niya sa akin. x x x14 incident to BBB. As to the awards of damages in qualified rape, People v.
Jugueta26 provides the following awards of damages: P100,000.00 as
9|Page
civil indemnity; P100,000.00 as moral damages; and P100,000.00 as child victims experience often lead them to find the courage to seek Aburido (Aburido), Divinagracia's sister, about the molestation.18
exemplary damages. In acts of lasciviousness, People v. succor from someone who appears to have moral ascendancy over
Aycardo27 enumerates the following awards of damages: P20,000.00 their perpetrator. This is often their mother, although at times, it may On January 19, 1999, or a little over two (2) years after the incident,
as civil indemnity; P15,000 as moral damages; and P15,000.00 as also be a relative. Sister Mary Ann Abuna (Sister Mary Ann), CCC's sister and a
exemplary damages. As properly held by the CA, the amounts of nun,19 visited her family in Cebu.20
damages awarded shall earn an interest of 6% per annum from the This case is the story of the courage of AAA and BBB, sisters who
date of finality of judgment until fully paid. were sexually molested by their father. That same day, AAA told Sister Mary Ann that she wanted to stop her
schooling and begged to go with her back to Manila because she did
WHEREFORE, the June 26, 2014 Decision of the Regional Trial This resolves the appeal, through Rule 124, Section 13, paragraph not want to see her father anymore. Sister Mary Ann asked AAA's
Court, Branch 69, Taguig City, in Criminal Case Nos. 146314-15, (c)2 of the Rules of Court, as amended by Administrative Matter No. sisters if their father had changed his ways. BBB and their other sister
is AFFIRMED with the 00-5-03-SC dated September 28, 2004, of the October 7, 2009 Joint responded that he had not reformed and even almost raped them.21
following MODIFICATIONS:chanRoblesvirtualLawlibrary Judgment3 of Branch 28, Regional Trial Court, Mandaue City in
WHEREFORE, in Criminal Case No. 146314, finding accused Criminal Case Nos. DU-8072 and DU-8074. The trial court found Sister Mary Ann asked the sisters to leave Cebu and go back with her
Dominador Udtohan y Jose GUILTY beyond reasonable doubt accused Julito Divinagracia, Sr. (Divinagracia) guilty beyond to Manila to prevent their father from further molesting them. She
of QUALIFIED RAPE under Article 266-A (1) (d) and penalized under reasonable doubt of one (1) count of rape in relation to Republic Act brought AAA, BBB, their other sister, and CCC back with her to
Article 266-B of the Revised Penal Code, the Court sentences him to No. 7610 and one (1) count of acts of lasciviousness in relation to Manila. A few days later they all went to Pampanga where Sister
suffer the penalty of reclusion perpetua, without eligibility for parole; Republic Act No. 7610. The Court of Appeals,4 upon intermediate Mary Ann was a missionary.22
and to pay AAA the amounts of P100,000.00 as civil indemnity, review, affirmed the trial court's Decision.
P100,000.00 as moral damages, and P100,000.00 as exemplary While in Pampanga, AAA saw CCC crying because she wanted to go
damages. This Court restates the facts as found by the lower courts. back to Cebu. AAA then went to Sister Mary Ann and declared that if
CCC would return to Cebu, she would not go back with her. It was at
In Criminal Case No. 146315, finding accused Dominador Udtohan y Divinagracia and CCC were husband and wife with seven (7) this point that AAA opened up to Sister Mary Ann about the sexual
Jose GUILTY beyond reasonable doubt of ACTS OF children.5 The family lived in a one (1)-room house at Jagobiao, abuse she suffered from her father.23
LASCIVIOUSNESS under Article 336 of the Revised Penal Code and Mandaue City near the boundary of Riverside, Consolacion.6
penalized under Section 5 (b), Article III of R.A. No. 7610, the Court Sister Mary Ann brought AAA to the Hospital Ning in Angeles City to
sentences him to suffer the penalty of 12 years and 1 day of reclusion Sometime in November 1996,7 Divinagracia and CCC quarrelled, be examined by a doctor.24 After examining AAA, Dr. Lauro C. Biag
temporal in its minimum period, as minimum, to 16 years, 5 months prompting CCC to leave and spend the night at her sibling's house. (Dr. Biag) issued a medical certificate,25 a portion of which read:
and 10 days of reclusion temporal in its medium period, as maximum; Their daughters AAA and BBB were then left by themselves8 since
and to pay AAA the amounts of P20,000.00 as civil indemnity, their other siblings were either at their grandmother's house or with Genitalia: labia majora/minora - well coaptated.
P15,000.00 as moral damages, and P15,000.00 as exemplary their friends.9 Hymen: orifice 0.7 cm old healed complete laceration on 11, 8, 2
damages. o'clock.
Later that evening, while AAA and BBB were sleeping side by side old healed incomplete laceration 5 & 10 o'clock.
In both cases, the amounts of damages awarded shall earn interest inside their house, BBB suddenly woke up to her father's tight (-) abrasion, (-) hematoma, (-) discharge26
at the rate of 6% per annum from the date of finality of judgment until embrace from behind and felt him roughly running his hand over her Sister Mary Ann helped the girls file their respective
fully paid. leg and breasts. BBB then felt her father poking his hard penis complaints27 against their father. At first, BBB was hesitant to file a
SO ORDERED. against her buttocks. BBB begged her father to stop, saying that she complaint but she finally agreed because AAA would not stop crying
still had to go to school the following day. Divinagracia moved away and was always afraid.28
from BBB and went out of the house.10
On November 13, 2000, Divinagracia was charged with rape and acts
BBB was nine (9) years old at that time.11 of lasciviousness in relation to Republic Act No. 7610.29 Pertinent
portions of the Information for rape read:chanRoblesvirtualLawlibrary
A few minutes later, Divinagracia went back inside the house and lay That on or about the month of November 1996 in the Municipality of
down beside AAA.12 AAA woke up and asked her father where her Consolacion, Province of Cebu, Philippines, and within the jurisdiction
mother was. Divinagracia pinched her ear and ordered her to keep of this Honorable Court, the above-named accused with deliberate
quiet.13 intent, by means of force and intimidation, did then and there wilfully,
unlawfully and feloniously have carnal knowledge with [AAA], his own
AAA noticed that BBB, who was then lying beside her, slowly moved daughter an [8-year-old] girl at that time, against her will and consent.
away. AAA tried to follow BBB, but Divinagracia pulled AAA towards
G.R. No. 207765, July 26, 2017 him and made her face him. Divinagracia pulled down AAA's shorts CONTRARY TO LAW.30
and put his finger inside her vagina. Afterwards, Divinagracia got on The Information for acts of lasciviousness
PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Plaintiff-Appellee, v. JULITO read:chanRoblesvirtualLawlibrary
DIVINAGRACIA, SR., Accused-Appellant. top of AAA and inserted his penis inside her vagina. AAA's father
then continued to molest her.14 That on or about the month of November 1996 in the Municipality of
DECISION Consolacion, Province of Cebu, Philippines, and within the jurisdiction
AAA cried to her sister for help but BBB could do nothing but weep of this Honorable Court, the above-named accused with force and
LEONEN, J.: intimidation and with lewd designs, did then and there wilfully,
and cover her ears.15 AAA was eight (8) years old at that time.16
1 unlawfully and feloniously commit an act of lasciviousness against
"Pa, don't do that[,] Pa."
The following day, AAA was shocked and scared to find blood stains [BBB], his own daughter, a [12-year-old] girl by embracing her,
on her shorts. Divinagracia merely laughed when he saw AAA's pressing his penis against her buttocks and touching her breasts,
Child victims of rape by their very own fathers usually continue to live
distress.17 against her will and consent.
in an environment where the perpetrators consistently underscore the
weakness and worthlessness of their victims. In addition to the
When CCC arrived later that day, AAA told her that she was molested CONTRARY TO LAW.31
continued economic dependence of the child victims, this ensures
by Divinagracia. AAA did not say that she was raped because she Divinagracia, assisted by counsel, pleaded not guilty to the charge of
enormous difficulty to find a safe space for them to reveal their ordeal
was afraid that her parents would only quarrel again. However, CCC rape against him.32 During pre-trial, defense admitted the following
and ensure protection. The animosity and intolerable indignity that
did not believe her daughter. AAA claimed that CCC told Elvira facts and stipulations:chanRoblesvirtualLawlibrary

10 | P a g e
1. The existence of a birth certificate of the private offended party.
Her birth certificate shows that she was born in Consolacion, Cebu on Dr. Poca, a pediatrician who was also a child protection The Regional Trial Court further held that Sister Mary Ann's testimony
October 29, 1988; specialist,39 interpreted the medical findings of Dr. Biag, who failed to corroborated both the testimonies of AAA and BBB.60
attend the hearings due to the distance of Angeles City, Pampanga
2. The accused is the father of the private offended party; from Mandaue City, Cebu.40 The dispositive portion of the Regional Trial Court's Joint Judgment
read:chanRoblesvirtualLawlibrary
3. On November 1996 and prior thereto, the accused had been living Dr. Poca testified that the healed lacerations at 11:00, 2:00, and WHEREFORE, in DU-8072, Joint Judgment is hereby rendered
together with his wife and children at Riverside, Consolacion, Cebu; 10:00 positions are "more likely congenital rather than finding the accused Julito Divinagracia, Sr., guilty beyond reasonable
acquired".41 However, the lacerations at 8:00 and 5:00 positions doubt of rape. The Court hereby imposes upon him the indeterminate
4. The existence of a medical certificate of the private offended party could have only been caused by penetration into the sentence of reclusion perpetua together with the accessory penalties
signed by a certain Dr. Lauro Biag, Medical Officer III of Hospital Ning vagina.42 Moreover, given AAA's disclosure, Dr. Poca opined that the of the law.
Angeles City[.]33 healed laceration at 8:00 position suggested sexual abuse.43
The prosecution, in turn, admitted the following facts and In DU-8074, judgment is hereby rendered finding the accused Julito
stipulations:chanRoblesvirtualLawlibrary The defense presented the following as its witnesses: Divinagracia, Divinagracia, Sr., guilty beyond reasonable doubt of acts of
1. The house where the family of the accused stays at Riverside, his neighbors Pamela Sison (Sison), Alvin Ho (Ho), Darwin Isok lasciviousness. The Court hereby imposes upon him the penalty of 14
Consolacion, Cebu is a one room affair, is about 6x8 meters which is (Isok), and his sister Aburido. years and 4 months of reclusion temporal as the minimum term to 17
more or less half of the area of this courtroom; years and 4 months of reclusion temporal as the maximum term
Divinagracia denied abusing his daughters44 and claimed that they together with the accessory penalties of the law.
2. The whole family which includes seven (7) children, the accused had a happy45 family life. He further claimed that he only found out
and his wife slept in the same house; about the complaints for molestation against him when he was The accused shall be given credit of his preventive detention but he
arrested in 2001.46 Divinagracia then accused his wife's family of shall not be eligible for parole.
3. The next door neighbor is about four (4) feet away from the house plotting against him.47
of the accused; With costs against the accused.
Sison testified that Divinagracia and his family had been her
4. Elvira Divinagracia Aburido, sister of the accused, also lives at neighbors as far back as the 1980s. Sison claimed that CCC used to IT IS SO ORDERED.61
Riverside, Consolacion, Cebu; go to her house all the time to complain about her financial problems On March 8, 2010, after Divinagracia filed an appeal from the Joint
and quarrels with Divinagracia.48 Sison further averred that despite Judgment, the Regional Trial Court transmitted the records of the
5. The complaint against the accused was filed at the Provincial beating his wife, Divinagracia appeared to be a loving father because case to the Court of Appeals.62
Prosecutor's Office on July 31, 2000.34 he was very affectionate and sent his children to school, even if he
The complaints for rape and acts of lasciviousness against was financially hard-up most of the time.49 On July 30, 2012, the Court of Appeals 63 denied Divinagracia's
Divinagracia were eventually consolidated for trial.35 appeal.
Ho, who had been Divinagracia's neighbor since 1992, attested that
Divinagracia, assisted by counsel, also pleaded not guilty to the Divinagracia would often quarrel with and hit CCC.50 He claimed that The Court of Appeals agreed with the Regional Trial Court that AAA's
charge of acts of lasciviousness against him.36 Defense then admitted it was impossible for Divinagracia to abuse his children because they testimony on her father's rape was clear, candid, and deserving of
the following facts and stipulations during pre- were always playful.51 He added that he had never seen the children belief. Additionally, her testimony was corroborated by BBB.64 The
trial:chanRoblesvirtualLawlibrary look weak and tired or heard them complain.52 dispositive portion of the Court of Appeals Decision
1. The accused is the father of the complaining witness; read:chanRoblesvirtualLawlibrary
Isok claimed that he was friends with some of Divinagracia's children WHEREFORE, premises considered, this appeal is DENIED.
2. The accused and the private complainant (his daughter) were as they all lived in the same neighborhood.53 Isok testified that he The Joint Judgment dated October 7, 2009 rendered by the Regional
residing at Riverside, Consolacion, Cebu at the time this incident was close with and fond of Divinagracia's family, yet he never heard Trial Court (RTC), Branch 28, Mandaue City, in Criminal Case Nos.
occurred in November 1996 and prior thereto. As a matter of fact, of any problems between Divinagracia and his children.54 DU-8072 and DU-8074 finding him guilty for Rape and Acts of
according to Atty. Rodriguez, all the members of the family of the Lasciviousness, respectively, is hereby AFFIRMED in toto. Costs
accused lived together at this place at this given time; Aburido testified to being Divinagracia's sister and aunt to AAA and against the appellant.
BBB.55 She claimed that she was not close to Divinagracia and his
3. The existence of a Certificate of Live Birth and Baptismal family but that her nieces and nephews would sometimes ask her for SO ORDERED.65
Certificate of the complaining witness.37 rice. Her brother would also go to her whenever he had any financial Divinagracia filed a Notice of Appeal66 with the Court of Appeals. On
On the other hand, the prosecution admitted the following problem. Aburido claimed that she first found out about her brother's August 28, 2013, this Court noted the records forwarded by the Court
stipulations:chanRoblesvirtualLawlibrary supposed abuse of AAA and BBB when he was arrested.56 of Appeals and informed the parties that they may file their respective
1. All the seven (7) children including the father and the mother lived supplemental briefs. This Court also required the Chief
together in a one-room house at Riverside, Consolacion, Cebu; In its Joint Judgment57 dated October 7, 2009, Branch 28, Regional Superintendent of the New Bilibid Prison to confirm Divinagracia's
Trial Court, Mandaue City found Divinagracia guilty beyond confinement therein.67
2. The mother of the complaining witness is a housewife; reasonable doubt of the charges of rape and acts of lasciviousness
against him. On November 12, 2013, Divinagracia manifested68 that he would be
3. The uncles and aunties of the complaining witness also live in adopting in toto the contents of his brief69 filed before the Court of
Consolacion, Cebu; In DU-8072, the Regional Trial Court ruled that AAA's testimony was Appeals.
direct, candid, and convincing, clearly proving that Divinagracia had
4. The next door neighbor of the family of the complaining witness at carnal knowledge of AAA when she was only eight (8) years old. The On November 15, 2013, the Office of the Solicitor General also
Riverside, Consolacion, Cebu is about 4 feet away from their house; Regional Trial Court also held that Dr. Poca's testimony corroborated manifested70 that it would be adopting its brief71 filed before the Court
AAA's version of the abuse she experienced.58 of Appeals.
5. The records show a [Si]numpaang Salaysay executed by the
complaining witness and subscribed before the City Prosecutor of In DU-8074, the Regional Trial Court found BBB's testimony to be In his Appellant's Brief, Divinagracia points to several inconsistencies
Angeles City on November 1999.38 clear and convincing on the acts of lasciviousness committed by her in the testimonies of AAA and BBB that purportedly lessen their
The prosecution presented the following as witnesses: AAA, BBB, father. The Regional Trial Court held that BBB was direct and credibility as witnesses.
Sister Mary Ann, and Dr. Naomi Poca (Dr. Poca). remained consistent and steadfast during her testimony.59
11 | P a g e
First, he claims that it was not clear when AAA told Sister Mary Ann when she told her aunt of the rape, but AAA was consistent in her consanguinity or affinity within the third civil degree, or the common-
about her rape. AAA claimed that she confided to her aunt Sister testimony that she eventually told her aunt about the rape when they law spouse of the parent of the victim[.]
Mary Ann when she visited them in Cebu in 1996. However, Sister left Cebu.84 This corroborates Sister Mary Ann's testimony that she The elements of qualified rape are: "(1) sexual congress; (2) with a
Mary Ann testified that AAA only told her about the rape when they only learned of AAA's rape in 1999, when they were no longer in woman; (3) [done] by force and without consent; ... (4) the victim is
were in Pampanga in 1999.72 Cebu. As found by the Court of Appeals:chanRoblesvirtualLawlibrary under eighteen years of age at the time of the rape; and (5) the
Stress is made that per the victim's testimony, when Sister [Mary] offender is a parent (whether legitimate, illegitimate or adopted) of the
Second, AAA testified that she told her mother about the rape the Ann visited their family here in Cebu in 1996, she (AAA) did not say victim."88
following day after it happened. This contradicts Sister Mary Ann's that she was raped but was molested. She only divulged the real
testimony that AAA's mother only learned of the rape after AAA was incident when they were already in Manila and even then, her It was not disputed that AAA was eight (8) years old in November
physically examined in Pampanga. Furthermore, AAA said that after relatives required that she undergo a medical examination, which 1996. The medical findings of Dr. Biag, as interpreted and testified to
she told her mother, CCC disclosed what happened to Aburido. could have been an avenue for them to verify and ascertain that what by Dr. Poca, also corroborate AAA's allegations of her father's abuse.
During her testimony, Aburido denied that she knew about the rape she was telling, that is, about being raped by her father, was the truth. Dr. Poca testified that while some of the healed lacerations could still
and claimed that she only found out about it when her brother was be considered as normal variant finding rather than acquired, the
arrested.73 Moreover, it was BBB who was adamant that they told Sister Mary lacerations at 8:00 and 5:00 positions could have only been caused
Anne [sic] about the incident in 1999 while they were already in by the insertion of a penis, object, or finger into the
Third, Divinagracia emphasizes that BBB never actually saw him Manila. Sister Mary Anne [sic] herself even testified that she was told vagina:chanRoblesvirtualLawlibrary
having sexual intercourse with AAA since BBB only testified to seeing that the children were abused while still in Cebu and was told about At 11, 8 and 2 - the findings at 11 and 2 o'clock are still considered,
him on top of AAA. Divinagracia also insists that BBB's accusation of the rape only in Manila. She even asked her niece AAA to undergo a based on studies, more likely congenital rather than acquired,
acts of lasciviousness against him was uncorroborated, even by AAA medical examination in order to confirm if AAA was really whereas the 8 o'clock finding is more likely an acquired condition and
who was in the same room when it supposedly happened.74 raped.85 (Citations omitted) that could have been caused by penetration of the vagina. Then the
These supposed discrepancies, not being elements of the crime, do old healed incomplete laceration ... at 5 and 10 o'clock, again the 10
Finally, Divinagracia asserts that the charges of rape and acts of not diminish the credibility of AAA's declarations. Jurisprudence has o'clock might still be a normal finding or a normal variant finding, but
lasciviousness against him were unfounded and that his guilt was held "youth and immaturity [to be] badges of truth and sincerity"86 and the 5 o'clock is more probably the result of an acquired condition like
never established beyond reasonable doubt.75 has generally given leeway to minor witnesses when relating trauma.89
traumatic incidents of the past.87 Dr. Poca likewise testified that given AAA's revelation of her ordeal
The prosecution, in turn, avers that it was able to prove Divinagracia's caused by her father, "the complete healed laceration at 8:00 o'clock"
guilt on both charges beyond reasonable doubt.76 is indicative of sexual abuse.90
II
The prosecution posits that the straightforward and candid People v. Noveras91 emphasized that when a rape victim's allegation
Article 266-A, paragraph 1 of the Revised Penal Code, as amended
testimonies of AAA and BBB, with the medical certificate issued by is corroborated by a physician's finding of penetration, "there is
by Republic Act No. 8353 or the Anti-Rape Law of 1997, provides the
Dr. Biag corroborating AAA's testimony, sufficiently proved the sufficient foundation to conclude the existence of the essential
elements for the crime of rape:chanRoblesvirtualLawlibrary
elements of the charges against their father.77 requisite of carnal knowledge."92
Article 266-A. Rape: When And How Committed. — Rape is
committed —
The prosecution contends that the supposed inconsistencies on when It is well-established that "[p]hysical evidence is evidence of the
AAA told Sister Mary Ann of the abuse or when CCC and Aburido highest order. It speaks more eloquently than a hundred
1) By a man who shall have carnal knowledge of a woman under any
learned of the ordeal she underwent are trivial matters, which have witnesses."93 The physical evidence of the healed lacerations in
of the following circumstances:
no bearing on the crimes committed.78 AAA's vagina strongly corroborates AAA and BBB's testimonies that
AAA was raped by their father.
a) Through force, threat, or intimidation;
The issue for resolution before this Court is whether the prosecution
proved beyond reasonable doubt Divinagracia's guilt for the crimes of Nonetheless, this Court notes that even if AAA was only physically
b) When the offended party is deprived of reason or otherwise
rape and acts of lasciviousness against his minor daughters. examined almost three (3) years after she was sexually abused by
unconscious;
her father, the defense never questioned the credibility of the expert
This Court affirms Divinagracia's conviction with some modifications. witness, nor was Dr. Poca's testimony impeached.
c) By means of fraudulent machination or grave abuse of authority;
and
The trial court, as upheld by the Court of Appeals, also ruled that
I
AAA's testimony was credible and competent, sufficiently proving the
d) When the offended party is under twelve (12) years of age or is
charge of rape against her father, thus:chanRoblesvirtualLawlibrary
The alleged inconsistencies in the testimonies of AAA, BBB, and demented, even though none of the circumstances mentioned above
The private complainant categorically stated that the accused (her
Sister Mary Ann are immaterial as these are not elements of the be present.
father) had sexual intercourse with her. The private complainant
crime and do not detract from the credibility of the witnesses. In fact, Rape becomes qualified when committed by a parent against his
clearly described the rape incident. "After he pulled my waist, he had
minor inconsistencies may even be expected from AAA and BBB who child less than 18 years of age. This is provided for under paragraph
me face him and he pulled down my shorts and. at that time I was not
are not accustomed to public trial and were only eight (8) and nine (9) 1, Article 266-B:chanRoblesvirtualLawlibrary
wearing any panty then he inserted his penis into my vagina but first
years old, respectively, at the time of their father's sexual abuse.79 Article 266-B. Penalties. — Rape under paragraph 1 of the next
he inserted his finger." This candid description of the molestations is
preceding article shall be punished by reclusion perpetua.
a direct statement that undoubtedly shows carnal knowledge by the
The rule cited in People v. Pacala80 that inconsistencies on minor
accused with his daughter.94 (Emphasis in the original)
details and collateral matters do not affect the veracity, substance, or ....
It is likewise immaterial that it took AAA more than two (2) years
weight of the witness' testimony finds application in the case at bar.81
before divulging the sexual abuse she experienced at her father's
The death penalty shall also be imposed if the crime of rape is
hands.
Divinagracia insists on inconsistencies on when AAA and BBB told committed with any of the following aggravating/qualifying
Sister Mary Ann about their father's attack. AAA claims that she told circumstances:
The records show that the day following her abuse, AAA immediately
her aunt sometime in 1996,82 contradicting Sister Mary Ann's
told her mother but CCC did not believe her. This lack of support from
testimony that AAA told her about the rape in 1999.83 1. When the victim is under eighteen (18) years of age and the
the very person she was expecting it from naturally made AAA wary
offender is a parent, ascendant, step-parent, guardian, relative by
of whom she could trust. It was only when she became close to and
The records show that AAA admitted that she could no longer recall
felt safe with Sister Mary Ann and after she was no longer in Cebu
12 | P a g e
under her father's control that she found the courage to reveal her quarrelled. What their testimonies inadvertently revealed, though, penalty of reclusion perpetua if the rape victim is below 12 years old
traumatic experience. This is consistent with the normal reaction of a was Divinagracia's proclivity towards violence, particularly when while the penalty of reclusion temporal in its medium period is
child raped by her father. dealing with his wife. His sister and neighbors testified that they imposed if the victim of lascivious conduct is also below 12 years
would regularly hear and see Divinagracia quarrelling with CCC, with old:chanRoblesvirtualLawlibrary
Dr. Poca, a child protection specialist, also confirmed that AAA's Divinagracia usually hitting CCC in the course of their arguments. Section 5. Child Prostitution and Other Sexual Abuse. —
failure to immediately disclose her abuse is a normal reaction of Divinagracia's violent nature frames an inference of a lack of
children:chanRoblesvirtualLawlibrary appreciation of the humanity of every member of the family and ....
Given her disclosure or her revelation that her father inserted his highlights his attitude of impunity.
finger and later his penis into her vagina but not having disclosed (b) Those who commit the act of sexual intercourse or lascivious
immediately because of fear which is a normal reaction of children, This Court sees no reason to reverse the findings of the Regional conduct with a child exploited in prostitution or subjected to other
and then having disclosed only to an aunt about 3 years later, which Trial Court and the Court of Appeals that Divinagracia was guilty sexual abuse; Provided, That when the victims is under twelve (12)
again is a normal reaction of children especially if they do find a beyond reasonable doubt of rape in relation to Republic Act No. years of age, the perpetrators shall be prosecuted under Article 335,
person whom they can trust and whom they can feel safe with, 7610. paragraph 3, for rape and Article 336 of Act No. 3815, as amended,
between 1996 and 1999 if there were any injuries at that point in the Revised Penal Code, for rape or lascivious conduct, as the case
1996, that could have healed and giving us these results in may be: Provided, That the penalty for lascivious conduct when the
IV
1999.95(Emphasis supplied) victim is under twelve (12) years of age shall be reclusion temporal in
This Court also notes that AAA asked, "Pa, where is Nanay?"96 when its medium period[.] (Emphasis supplied)
On the charge of acts of lasciviousness in relation to Republic Act No.
she woke up to find her father lying beside her. Her question was The Regional Trial Court correctly set the penalty of reclusion
7610, Article 2(h) of the Implementing Rules and Regulations of
telling. At that moment, she perhaps already entertained a fear that perpetua for rape. However, since the victim was under twelve (12)
Republic Act No. 7610 defines lascivious conduct
something so wrong was about to happen to her. At the same time, years of age at the time of the crime, the imposable penalty for
as:chanRoblesvirtualLawlibrary
she was trying to tell him that her mother would not approve of what lascivious conduct should have been within the range of 14 years, 8
[T]he intentional touching, either directly or through clothing, of the
he was about to do. months, and 1 day to 17 years and 4 months, or reclusion
genitalia, anus, groin, breast, inner thigh, or buttocks, or the
temporal in its medium period, as mandated by Republic Act No.
introduction of any object into the genitalia, anus or mouth, of any
Furthermore, BBB testified that her father groped her and poked his 7610. Instead, the Regional Trial Court imposed the range of 14
person, whether of the same or opposite sex, with an intent to abuse,
penis against her buttocks but that he stopped and left the house years and 4 months to 17 years and 4 months. Applying the
humiliate, harass, degrade, or arouse or gratify the sexual desire of
after she pleaded with him. However, she saw him go back a few Indeterminate Sentence Law107 and with the presence of the
any person, bestiality, masturbation, lascivious exhibition of the
minutes later and she tried to warn AAA by pinching her, but AAA did alternative aggravating circumstance108of relationship, the maximum
genitals or pubic area of a person[.]
not wake up. When AAA did wake up, Divinagracia was already term of the sentence to be imposed should be taken from the
As with the rape case, the parties in the case for acts of
beside her.97 maximum period of the imposable penalty, that is reclusion
lasciviousness also affirmed BBB's minority at the time of the assault
temporal maximum, which ranges from 17 years, 4 months, and 1
and her relationship with Divinagracia.
BBB testified that she saw her father get on top of AAA, who could day to 20 years.109 The minimum term under the Indeterminate
not repel his advances. BBB admitted that AAA was crying and Sentence Law shall be within the range of one (1) degree lower
The Regional Trial Court and Court of Appeals likewise found that
calling out for help the whole time their father was on top of her, but than reclusion temporal, which is prision mayor with a total range of
there was clear and convincing evidence to hold Divinagracia guilty of
BBB lamented that she was unable to go to her sister because she six (6) years and one (1) day to 12 years.110
committing sexual violence against his daughter BBB. The lower
could not move due to fear.98
courts also found BBB's testimony to be candid, credible, and
There is also a need to review the lack of civil indemnity and other
competent; thus:chanRoblesvirtualLawlibrary
BBB's reaction is consistent with the normal, expected actuations of a damages in the decisions of the lower courts. The Regional Trial
Such finding of lasciviousness is solely attributable to the testimony of
child seeing her father doing despicable acts on her younger sister, Court, as affirmed by the Court of Appeals, held that since
the private complainant BBB whom the court considers credible and
especially after she herself had fallen victim to his acts of Divinagracia, as the father of AAA and BBB, stood to benefit from the
competent. BBB categorically stated that the accused (her father) lay
lasciviousness. Her action is a mixture of denial and fear—denial that monetary award, it would not be proper to award civil
down beside her, embraced her and poked his penis to her buttocks.
the father whom she trusted could do these acts and fear, not so indemnity:chanRoblesvirtualLawlibrary
BBB clearly recalled the manner the lascivious acts by demonstrating
much for her physical safety, but more for her economic and financial The Court shall not award civil indemnity to the private complainant.
these in the court. "He embraced me tightly this way (witness
support. The accused as the father of the private complainants stands to
demonstrating by closing her arms in front of her fist), the (sic) after
benefit from the monetary award if adjudicated to his daughters since
that he slipped his hand from here up to here, touching my body
The rule is settled that the factual findings and the evaluation of he is a compulsory heir. The concept of indemnification is not served
(witness demonstrating by tracing her palm from the left thigh upward
witnesses' credibility and testimony made by the trial court should be if the very person made to pay for his crime shall benefit from it.111
towards the left side of her body under her armpit." This candid
entitled to great respect, unless it is shown that the trial court may The lower courts are mistaken.
description of the molestation is a direct statement that undoubtedly
have "overlooked, misapprehended, or misapplied any fact or
proves the crime committed by the accused with his
circumstance of weight and substance."99 Civil indemnity ex delicto, as a form of monetary restitution or
daughter.103 (Emphasis in the original, citation omitted)
compensation to the victim, attaches upon a finding of criminal liability
Compared to his daughter's candid and categorical testimony,
Aside from the supposed inconsistencies in AAA's and Sister Mary because "[e]very person criminally liable for a felony is also civilly
Divinagracia's defense of denial must fail. Imbo v.
Ann's testimonies, Divinagracia only managed to present a defense liable."112
People104 emphasized that the self-serving defense of denial falters
of denial, which must fail in light of AAA's categorical and competent
against the "positive identification by, and straightforward narration of
testimony as well as the undisputed findings of healed lacerations in On the other hand, moral damages are treated as "compensatory
the victim."105
her vagina. This Court is not swayed by Divinagracia's argument that damages awarded for mental pain and suffering or mental anguish
his daughters were manipulated by his in-laws into filing these resulting from a wrong."113 The award of moral damages is meant to
This Court has repeatedly held that the lone yet credible testimony of
charges against him. People v. Venturing100 aptly stated that "[n]ot restore the status quo ante; thus, it must be commensurate to the
the offended party is sufficient to establish the guilt of the accused.106
even the most ungrateful and resentful daughter would push her own suffering and anguish experienced by the victim.114
father to the wall as the fall guy in any crime unless the accusation
against him is true."101 V Finally, exemplary or corrective damages are imposed as an example
to the public,115 serving as a deterrent to the commission of similar
Even the well-meaning testimonies of the other defense Despite upholding the findings of fact and appreciation of the acts. Exemplary damages are also awarded as a part of the civil
witnesses102 did not disprove AAA's account of the rape since they evidence by the lower courts, there is a need to modify the penalties liability may be imposed when the crime was committed with one or
only managed to prove that Divinagracia and his wife constantly awarded. Section 5(b) of Republic Act No. 7610 provides for the more aggravating circumstances.116
13 | P a g e
Everything went well since then. Nobody was heard to complain of
In view of the depravity of the acts committed by Divinagracia against any irregularity in the distribution of the said estate until the widow,
his minor daughters, this Court imposes the following monetary Maria Gerardo died on March 5, 1948. Upon her death, it was
awards, in accordance with jurisprudence: G.R. No. L-17818 January 25, 1967 discovered that she had executed two wills, in the first of which, she
instituted Salud and Milagros, both surnamed Barretto, as her heirs;
For rape against AAA, Divinagracia is directed to pay AAA and, in the second, she revoked the same and left all her properties
TIRSO T. REYES, as guardian of the minors Azucena Flordelis
P100,000.00 as civil indemnity, P100,000.00 as moral damages, and in favor of Milagros Barretto alone. Thus, the later will was allowed
and Tirso, Jr., all surnamed Reyes y Barretto,plaintiffs-appellants,
P100,000.00 as exemplary damages.117 and the first rejected. In rejecting the first will presented by Tirso
vs.
Reyes, as guardian of the children of Salud Barretto, the lower court
LUCIA MILAGROS BARRETTO-DATU, defendant-appellee.
For acts of lasciviousness against BBB, this Court adopts the ruling held that Salud was not the daughter of the decedent Maria Gerardo
in People v. Santos118 and directs Divinagracia to pay BBB by her husband Bibiano Barretto. This ruling was appealed to the
P20,000.00 as civil indemnity and P30,000.00 as moral damages. Recto Law Office for plaintiff-appealant. Supreme Court, which affirmed the same.1
However, in light of the heinous nature of the crime committed, Deogracias T. Reyes and Associates for defendant-appellee.
exemplary damages are increased from P2,000.00 to P20,000.00.
Having thus lost this fight for a share in the estate of Maria Gerardo,
In addition, interest at the legal rate of six percent (6%) per annum REYES, J.B.L., J.: as a legitimate heir of Maria Gerardo, plaintiff now falls back upon the
shall be imposed on all damages awarded from the date of finality of remnant of the estate of the deceased Bibiano Barretto, which was
this judgment until fully paid.119 given in usufruct to his widow Maria Gerardo. Hence, this action for
Direct appeal from a judgment of the Court of First Instance of the recovery of one-half portion, thereof.
WHEREFORE, the Court of Appeals Decision in CA-G.R. CEB CR- Bulacan, in its Civil Case No. 1084, dismissing the complaint of
H.C. No. 01134 dated July 30, 2012 is AFFIRMED with appellant Tirso T. Reyes and ordering the same to deliver to the
defendant-appellee, Lucia Milagros Barretto-Datu, the properties This action afforded the defendant an opportunity to set up her right
MODIFICATION. Accused-appellant Julito Divinagracia, Sr. is
receivea by his deceasea wife under the terms of the will of the late of ownership, not only of the fishpond under litigation, but of all the
sentenced to suffer the penalty of a) reclusion perpetua for the crime
Bibiano Barretto, consisting of lots in Manila, Rizal, Pampanga and other properties willed and delivered to Salud Barretto, for being a
of rape in relation to Republic Act No. 7610; and b) the indeterminate
Bulacan, valued at more than P200,000. spurious heir, and not entitled to any share in the estate of Bibiano
penalty of 12 years of prision mayor, as minimum, to 20 years
Barretto, thereby directly attacking the validity, not only of the project
of reclusion temporal, as maximum, for the crime of acts of
of partition, but of the decision of the court based thereon as well.
lasciviousness in relation to Republic Act No. 7610. Furthermore, he
The decision appealed from sets the antecedents of the case to be as
is ordered to pay AAA P100,000.00 as civil indemnity, P100,000.00 follows:
as moral damages, and P100,000.00 as exemplary damages. He is The defendant contends that the Project of Partition from which Salud
also ordered to pay BBB P20,000.00 as civil indemnity, P30,000.00 acquired the fishpond in question is void ab initio and Salud Barretto
as moral damages, and P20,000.00 as exemplary damages. All the "This is an action to recover one-half share in the did not acquire any valid title thereto, and that the court did not
awarded damages shall earn the legal interest rate of six percent fishpond, located in the barrio of San Roque, Hagonoy, acquire any jurisdiction of the person of the defendant, who was then
(6%) per annum from the date of finality of this judgment until fully Bulacan, covered by Transfer Certificate of Title No. T- a minor.'
paid. 13734 of the Land Records of this Province, being the
share of plaintiff's wards as minor heirs of the deceased
SO ORDERED. Salud Barretto, widow of plaintiff Tirso Reyes, guardian of Finding for the defendant (now appellee), Milagros Barretto, the lower
said minors." court declared the project of partition submitted in the proceedings for
the settlement of the estate of Bibiano Barretto (Civil Case No. 49629
of the Court of First Instance of Manila) to be null and void ab
It appears that Bibiano Barretto was married to Maria Gerardo. initio (not merely voidable) because the distributee, Salud Barretto,
During their lifetime they acquired a vast estate, consisting of real predecessor of plaintiffs (now appellants), was not a daughter of the
properties in Manila, Pampanga, and Bulacan, covered by Transfer spouses Bibiano Barretto and Maria Gerardo. The nullity of the
Certificates of Title Nos. 41423, 22443, 8858, 32989, 31046, 27285, project of partition was decreed on the basis of Article 1081 of the
6277, 6500, 2057, 6501, 2991, 57403 and 12507/T-337. Civil Code of 1889 (then in force) providing as follows: .

When Bibiano Barretto died on February 18, 1936, in the City of A partition in which a person was believed to be an heir,
Manila, he left his share of these properties in a will Salud Barretto, without being so, has been included, shall be null and
mother of plaintiff's wards, and Lucia Milagros Barretto and a small void.
portion as legacies to his two sisters Rosa Barretto and Felisa
Barretto and his nephew anä nieces® The usufruct oæ the fishponä
situateä iî barrio Saî Roque¬ Hagonoy, Bulacan, above-mentioned, The court a quo further rejected the contention advanced by plaintiffs
however, was reserved for his widow, Maria Gerardo® Iî the that since Bibiano Barretto was free to dispose of one-third (1/3) of
meantime¬ Maria Gerardo was appointeä administratrix. By virtue his estate under the old Civil Code, his will was valid in favor of Salud
thereof, she prepared a project of partition, which was signed by her Barretto (nee Lim Boco) to the extent, at least, of such free part. And
in her own behalf and as guardian of the minor Milagros Barretto. it concluded that, as defendant Milagros was the only true heir of
Said project of partition was approved by the Court of First Instance Bibiano Barretto, she was entitled to recover from Salud, and from
of Manila on November 22, 1939. The distribution of the estate and the latter's children and successors, all the Properties received by her
the delivery of the shares of the heirs followed forthwith. As a from Bibiano's estate, in view of the provisions of Article 1456 of the
consequence, Salud Barretto took immediate possession of her share new Civil Code of the Philippines establishing that property acquired
and secured the cancellation of the original certificates of title and the by fraud or mistake is held by its acquirer in implied trust for the real
issuance of new titles in her own name. owner. Hence, as stated at the beginning of this opinion, the Court a
quo not only dismissed the plaintiffs' complaint but ordered them to
return the properties received under the project of partition previously

14 | P a g e
mentioned as prayed for in defendant Milagros Barretto's It is, however, argued for the appellee that since the court's Catholic Bishop of Nueva Caceres, 45 Phil. 895.) There is
counterclaim. However, it denied defendant's prayer for damages. distribution of the estate of the late Bibiano Barretto was predicated no reason why, by analogy, these salutary doctrines
Hence, this appeal interposed by both plaintiffs and defendant. on the project of partition executed by Salud Barretto and the widow, should not apply to intestate proceedings.
Maria Gerardo (who signed for herself and as guardian of the minor
Milagros Barretto), and since no evidence was taken of the filiation of
Plaintiffs-appellants correctly point out that Article 1081 of the old the heirs, nor were any findings of fact or law made, the decree of The only instance that we can think of in which a party
Civil Code has been misapplied to the present case by the court distribution can have no greater validity than that of the basic interested in a probate proceeding may have a final
below. The reason is obvious: Salud Barretto admittedly had been partition, and must stand or fall with it, being in the nature of a liquidation set aside is when he is left out by reason of
instituted heir in the late Bibiano Barretto's last will and testament judgment by consent, based on a compromise. Saminiada vs. Mata, circumstances beyond his control or through mistake or
together with defendant Milagros; hence, the partition had between 92 Phil. 426, is invoked in support of the proposition. That case is inadvertence not imputable to negligence. Even then, the
them could not be one such had with a party who was believed to be authority for the proposition that a judgment by compromise may be better practice to secure relief is reopening of the same
an heir without really being one, and was not null and void under said set aside on the ground of mistake or fraud, upon petition filed in due case by proper motion within the reglementary period,
article. The legal precept (Article 1081) does not speak of children, or time, where petition for "relief was filed before the compromise instead of an independent action the effect of which, if
descendants, but of heirs(without distinction between forced, agreement a proceeding, was consummated" (cas. cit. at p. 436). In successful, would be, as in the instant case, for another
voluntary or intestate ones), and the fact that Salud happened not to the case before us, however, the agreement of partition was not only court or judge to throw out a decision or order already
be a daughter of the testator does not preclude her being one of the ratified by the court's decree of distribution, but actually final and executed and reshuffle properties long ago
heirs expressly named in his testament; for Bibiano Barretto was at consummated, so much so that the titles in the name of the deceased distributed and disposed of.
liberty to assign the free portion of his estate to whomsoever he were cancelled, and new certificates issued in favor of the heirs, long
chose. While the share (½) assigned to Salud impinged on the before the decree was attacked. Hence, Saminiada vs. Mata does not
legitime of Milagros, Salud did not for that reason cease to be a It is well to observe, at this juncture, as this Court expressly declared
apply.
testamentary heir of Bibiano Barretto. in Reyes vs. Barretto Datu, 94 Phil. 446 (Am'd Rec. Appeal, pp. 156,
157), that:
Moreover, the defendant-appellee's argument would be plausible if it
Nor does the fact that Milagros was allotted in her father's will a share were shown that the sole basis for the decree of distribution was the
smaller than her legitime invalidate the institution of Salud as heir, ... It is argued that Lucia Milagros Barretto was a minor
project of partition. But, in fact, even without it, the distribution could
since there was here no preterition, or total ommission of a forced when she signed the partition, and that Maria Gerardo
stand, since it was in conformity with the probated will of Bibiano
heir. For this reason, Neri vs. Akutin, 72 Phil. 322, invoked by was not her judicially appointed guardian. The claim is not
Barretto, against the provisions whereof no objection had been made.
appellee, is not at all applicable, that case involving an instance of true. Maria Gerardo signed as guardian of the minor.
In fact it was the court's duty to do so. Act 190, section 640, in force
preterition or omission of children of the testator's former marriage. (Secs. 3 and 5, Rule 97, Rules of Court.) The mere
in 1939, provided: .
statement in the project of partion that the guardianship
proceedings of the minor Lucia Milagros Barretto are
Appellee contends that the partition in question was void as a SEC. 640. Estate, How Administered. — When a will is pending in the court, does not mean that the guardian had
compromise on the civil status of Salud in violation of Article 1814 of thus allowed, the court shall grant letters testamentary, or not yet been appointed; it meant that the guardianship
the old Civil Code. This view is erroneous, since a compromise letters of administration with the will annexed, and such proceedings had not yet been terminated, and as a
presupposes the settlement of a controversy through mutual letters testamentary or of administration, shall extend to guardianship proceedings begin with the appointment of a
concessions of the parties (Civil Code of 1889, Article 1809; Civil all the estate of the testator in the Philippine Islands. Such guardian, Maria Gerardo must have been already
Code of the Philippines, Art. 2028); and the condition of Salud as estate, after the payment of just debts and expenses of appointed when she signed the project of partition. There
daughter of the testator Bibiano Barretto, while untrue, was at no time administration, shall be disposed of according to such will, is, therefore, no irregularity or defect or error in the project
disputed during the settlement of the estate of the testator. There can so far as such will may operate upon it; and the residue, if of partition, apparent on the record of the testate
be no compromise over issues not in dispute. And while a any, shall be disposed of as is provided by law in cases of proceedings, which shows that Maria Gerardo had no
compromise over civil status is prohibited, the law nowhere forbids a estates in these Islands belonging to persons who are power or authority to sign the project of partition as
settlement by the parties over the share that should correspond to a inhabitants of another state or country. (Emphasis guardian of the minor Lucia Milagros Barretto, and,
claimant to the estate. supplied) consequently, no ground for the contention that the order
approving the project of partition is absolutely null and
void and may be attacked collaterally in these
At any rate, independently of a project of partition which, as its own That defendant Milagros Barretto was a minor at the time the probate proceedings.
name implies, is merely a proposal for distribution of the estate, that court distributed the estate of her father in 1939 does not imply that
the court may accept or reject, it is the court alone that makes the the said court was without jurisdiction to enter the decree of
distribution of the estate and determines the persons entitled thereto distribution. Passing upon a like issue, this Court ruled in Ramos vs. So that it is now incontestable that appellee Milagros Barretto was not
and the parts to which each is entitled (Camia vs. Reyes, 63 Phil. Ortuzar, 89 Phil. Reports, pp. 741 and 742: only made a party by publication but actually appeared and
629, 643; Act 190, Section 750; Rule 90, Rules of 1940; Rule 91, participated in the proceedings through her guardian: she, therefore,
Revised Rules of Court), and it is that judicial decree of distribution, can not escape the jurisdiction of the Manila Court of First Instance
once final, that vests title in the distributees. If the decree was If we are to assume that Richard Hill and Marvin Hill did which settled her father's estate.
erroneous or not in conformity with law or the testament, the same not formally intervene, still they would be concluded by
should have been corrected by opportune appeal; but once it had the result of the proceedings, not only as to their civil
become final, its binding effect is like that of any other judgment in status but as the distribution of the estate as well. As this Defendant-appellee further pleads that as her mother and guardian
rem, unless properly set aside for lack of jurisdiction or fraud. Court has held in Manolo vs. Paredes, 47 Phil. 938, "The (Maria Gerardo) could not have ignored that the distributee Salud
proceeding for probate is one in rem (40 Cyc., 1265) and was not her child, the act of said widow in agreeing to the oft-cited
the court acquires jurisdiction over all persons interested, partition and distribution was a fraud on appellees rights and entitles
It is thus apparent that where a court has validly issued a decree of through the publication of the notice prescribed by section her to relief. In the first place, there is no evidence that when the
distribution of the estate, and the same has become final, the validity 630 C.P.C.; and any order that any be entered therein is estate of Bibiano Barretto was judicially settled and distributed
or invalidity of the project of partition becomes irrelevant. binding against all of them." (See also in re Estate of appellants' predecessor, Salud Lim Boco Barretto to, knew that she
Johnson, 39 Phil. 156.) "A final order of distribution of the was not Bibiano's child: so that if fraud was committed, it was the
estate of a deceased person vests the title to the land of widow, Maria Gerardo, who was solely responsible, and neither Salud
the estate in the distributees". (Santos vs. Roman nor her minor children, appellants herein, can be held liable therefor.

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In the second placegranting that there was such fraud, relief
therefrom can only be obtained within 4 years from its discovery, and
the record shows that this period had elapsed long ago.

Because at the time of the distribution Milagros Barretto was only 16


years old (Exhibit 24), she became of age five years later, in 1944.
On that year, her cause of action accrued to contest on the ground of
fraud the court decree distributing her father's estate and the four-
year period of limitation started to run, to expire in 1948 (Section 43,
Act. 190). In fact, conceding that Milagros only became aware of the
true facts in 1946 (Appellee's Brief, p. 27), her action still became
extinct in 1950. Clearly, therefore, the action was already barred
when in August 31, 1956 she filed her counterclaim in this case
contesting the decree of distribution of Bibiano Barretto's estate.

In order to evade the statute of limitations, Milagros Barretto


introduced evidence that appellant Tirso Reyes had induced her to
delay filing action by verbally promising to reconvey the properties
received by his deceased wife, Salud. There is no reliable evidence
of the alleged promise, which rests exclusively on the oral assertions
of Milagros herself and her counsel. In fact, the trial court made no
mention of such promise in the decision under appeal. Even more:
granting arguendo that the promise was made, the same can not bind
the wards, the minor children of Salud, who are the real parties in
interest. An abdicative waiver of rights by a guardian, being an act of
disposition, and not of administration, can not bind his wards, being
null and void as to them unless duly authorized by the proper court
(Ledesma Hermanos vs. Castro, 55 Phil. 136, 142).

In resume, we hold (1) that the partition had between Salud and
Milagros Barretto in the proceedings for the settlement of the estate
of Bibiano Barretto duly approved by the Court of First Instance of
Manila in 1939, in its Civil Case No. 49629, is not void for being
contrary to either Article 1081 or 1814 of the, Civil Code of 1889; (2)
that Milagros Barretto's action to contest said partition and decree of
distribution is barred by the statute of limitations; and (3) that her
claim that plaintiff-appellant guardian is a possessor in bad faith and
should account for the fruits received from the properties inherited by
Salud Barretto (nee Lim Boco) is legally untenable. It follows that the
plaintiffs' action for partition of the fishpond described in the complaint
should have been given due course.

Wherefore, the decision of the Court of First Instance of Bulacan now


under appeal is reversed and set aside in so far as it orders plaintiff-
appellant to reconvey to appellee Milagros Barretto Datu the
properties enumeracted in said decision, and the same is affirmed in
so far as it denies any right of said appellee to accounting. Let the
records be returned to the court of origin, with instructions to proceed
with the action for partition of the fishpond (Lot No. 4, Plan Psu-
4709), covered by TCT No. T-13734 of the Office of the Register of
Deeds of Bulacan, and for the accounting of the fruits thereof, as
prayed for in the complaint No costs.

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