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G.R. No.

October 7, 2008

Secretary of National Defense and Chief of Staff of Armed Forces of the Philippines; Petitioners

The brothers Raymond and Reynald Manalo, farmers from Bulacan were abducted, detained in
various locations, tortured by Citizen Armed Forces Geographical Unit (CAFGU) on the
suspicion that they were members and supporters of the New People’s Army (NPA). After
eighteen (18) months of restrained liberty, torture, and other dehumanizing acts, were able to
escape. Ten days after their escape, they filed a Petition for Prohibition, Injunction, and
Temporary Restraining Order before the Supreme Court to prevent military officers and agents
from depriving them of their right to liberty and other basic rights. Existing petition was treated
as Amparo petition. The Supreme Court granted the Writ of Amparo and ordered the Court of
Appeals to conduct the summary hearing and decide the petition.

1. Whether or not statements from the victims is sufficient for amparo petitions.
2. Whether or not actual deprivation of liberty is necessary to invoke the right to security of a

1. Yes. Much of the information and evidence of the ordeal will come from the victims
themselves, and the veracity of their account will depend on their credibility and candidness in
their written and oral statements. Their statements can be corroborated by other evidence such as
physical evidence left by the torture they suffered or landmarks they can identify in the places
where they were detained.
2. Yes. Covered by the privilege of the writ, respondents must meet the threshold requirement
that their right to life, liberty and security is violated or threatened with an unlawful act or
omission. The right to security of person is “freedom from fear.” In The Universal Declaration of
Human Rights (UDHR) states that “a world in which human beings shall enjoy freedom of
speech and belief and freedom from fear and want has been proclaimed as the highest aspiration
of the common people.” Moreover, the right to security of person is a guarantee of protection of
one’s rights by the government. As the government is the chief guarantor of order and security,
the Constitutional guarantee of the rights to life, liberty and security of person is rendered
ineffective if government does not afford protection to these rights especially when they are
under threat.

Brothers Raymond and Reynaldo Manalo were abducted by military men belonging to the
CAFGU on the suspicion that they were members and supporters of the NPA. After 18 months
of detention and torture, the brothers escaped on August 13, 2007.

Ten days after their escape, they filed a Petition for Prohibition, Injunction, and Temporary
Restraining Order to stop the military officers and agents from depriving them of their right to
liberty and other basic rights. While the said case was pending, the Rule on the Writ of Amparo
took effect on October 24, 2007. The Manalos subsequently filed a manifestation and omnibus
motion to treat their existing petition as amparo petition.

On December 26, 2007, the Court of Appeals granted the privilege of the writ of amparo. The
CA ordered the Secretary of National Defense and the Chief of Staff of the AFP to furnish the
Manalos and the court with all official and unofficial investigation reports as to the Manalos’
custody, confirm the present places of official assignment of two military officials involved, and
produce all medical reports and records of the Manalo brothers while under military custody.
The Secretary of National Defense and the Chief of Staff of the AFP appealed to the SC seeking
to reverse and set aside the decision promulgated by the CA.


In upholding the CA decision, the Supreme Court ruled that there is a continuing violation of the
Manalos right to security. xxx The Writ of Amparo is the most potent remedy available to any
person whose right to life, liberty, and security has been violated or is threatened with violation
by an unlawful act or omission by public officials or employees and by private individuals or
entities. xxx Understandably, since their escape, the Manalos have been under concealment and
protection by private citizens because of the threat to their life, liberty, and security. The
circumstances of respondents’ abduction, detention, torture and escape reasonably support a
conclusion that there is an apparent threat that they will again be abducted, tortured, and this
time, even executed. These constitute threats to their liberty, security, and life, actionable
through a petition for a writ of amparo,” the Court explained. (GR No. 180906, The Secretary of
National Defense v. Manalo, October 7, 2008)
Reverend Father ROBERT P. REYES,


Petitioner, Rev. Reyes was among those arrested in the Manila Peninsula Hotel siege on
November 2007 and together with fifty (50) others, they were brought to Camp Crame to await
inquest proceedings. On December 2007, a Hold Departure Order List was issued ordering the
Immigration to include the name of petitioner and 49 others for the alleged crime of Rebellion, in
the interest of national security and public safety.

Petitioner’s counsel wrote the DOJ Secretary requesting the lifting of HDO, in view of the
dismissal of his client’s criminal case on rebellion. That, the DOJ Secretary has not acted on their
request, petitioner then next recourse was for the availment of the writ of amparo because of his
alleged continued restraint of right to travel.


Whether petitioner’s right to liberty has been violated or threatened with violation by the
issuance of the HDO, which would entitle him to the privilege of the writ of amparo.


No. The right to travel refers to the right to move from one place to another. Here, the restriction
on petitioner’s right to travel as a consequence of the pendency of the criminal case filed against
him was not unlawful. Petitioner has also failed to establish that his right to travel was impaired
in the manner and to the extent that it amounted to a serious violation of his right to life, liberty
and security, for which there exists no readily available legal recourse or remedy.

The writ of amparo was originally conceived as a response to the extraordinary rise in the
number of killings and enforced disappearances, and to the perceived lack of available and
effective remedies to address these extraordinary concerns. Where, as in this case, there is no
clear showing that the right to life, liberty or security of the petitioner is immediately in danger
or threatened, or that the danger or threat is continuing. Petitioner’s apprehension is at best
merely speculative.
August 28, 2018Gracezyl Blancoconstitutional law, Political Law, rodriguez vs arroyo, writ of amparo cases


G.R. NO. 191805
NOVEMBER 15, 2011
FACTS: Noriel Rodriguez (petitioner) is a member of Alyansa Dagiti Mannalon Iti Cagayan, a
peasant organization affiliated with Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP).

Under the Oplan Bantay Laya, the military tagged KMP members as an enemy of the state,
making its members an easy target of extra-judicial killings and enforced disappearances.

On September 6, 2009, Rodriguez just alighted from a tricycle driven by Hermie Antonio Carlos
in Brgy. Tapel, Cagayan, when 4 men forcibly took him and forced him to get inside a car where
more men in civilian clothing were waiting (1 was holding a .45 caliber pistol).
The men started punching Rodriguez inside the car, and forced him to confess that he is a
member of the New People’s Army (NPA). Rodriguez remained silent until they reached a
military camp belonging to the 17th Infantry Battalion of the Philippine Army.

Rodriguez was then subjected to beatings and torture by members of the Philippine Army.
Members of the army wanted him to admit that he is an NPA member and then pinpoint other
NPA members and camp locations. Since Rodriguez cannot answer, he is repeatedly beaten and
tortured. Rodriguez was also coerced to sign several documents to declare that he is a

On September 17, 2009, Rodriguez’s mother and brother came to see him (accompanied by
members of the CHR – Pasicolan, Cruz and Callagan). They insisted to take Rodriguez home
with them to Manila.

Rodriguez arrived in Manila on September 18. Callagan and 2 military members went inside
their house and took pictures for around 30 minutes despite Rodriguez’s effort to stop them.

On November 3, Rodriguez and his girlfriend notices that several suspicious-looking men are
following them on the streets, jeepney and MRT.
On December 7, Rodriguez filed a Petition for the Writ of Amparo and Petition for the Writ of
Habeas Data with Prayers for Protection Orders, Inspection of Place, and Production of
Documents and Personal Properties dated 2 December 2009.

The petition was filed against former President Arroyo, Gen. Ibrado, PDG. Versoza, Lt. Gen.
Bangit, Major General (Maj. Gen.) Nestor Z. Ochoa, P/CSupt. Tolentino, P/SSupt. Santos, Col.
De Vera, 1st Lt. Matutina, Calog, George Palacpac, Cruz, Pasicolan and Callagan.

Respondents contend that Rodriguez is a double agent, and had been working as their
informant/infiltrator in the fight against NPA rebels.

Then President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, through the solicitor-general, insisted on her

immunity from suits (by virtue of her position as president).

Supreme Court granted the writs after finding that the petition sufficiently alleged the abduction
and torture of Rodriguez by members of the Philippine Army. SC directed the Court of Appeals
to hear the petition.

CA ruled in favor of Rodriguez and found Ibrado, Versoza, Bangit, Ochoa, Tolentino, Santos, De
Vera and Matutina liable for his abduction and torture. As to Calog and Palacpac, the case was
dismissed for lack of merit. On President Arroyo, the case was dismissed on account of her
immunity from suits.


1. WON President Arroyo should be dropped as a respondent by virtue of her presidential immunity
from suit
2. WON the doctrine of command responsibility can be used in writs of amparo and habeas data

(1) CA’s rationale does not stand anymore since the presidential immunity from suits only
applies during her incumbency. “Incumbent Presidents are immune from suit or from being
brought to court during the period of their incumbency and tenure but not beyond.”

“A non-sitting President does not enjoy immunity from suit, even for acts committed during the
latter’s tenure. We emphasize our ruling therein that courts should look with disfavor upon the
presidential privilege of immunity, especially when it impedes the search for truth or impairs the
vindication of a right.”

Term vs Tenure: The term means the time during which the officer may claim to hold the office
as of right, and fixes the interval after which the several incumbents shall succeed one another.
The tenure represents the term during which the incumbent actually holds office. The tenure may
be shorter than the term for reasons within or beyond the power of the incumbent. The intent of
the framers of the 1987 Constitution is to limit the president’s immunity from suits during their
tenure (and not term).

“It is clear that former President Arroyo cannot use the presidential immunity from suit to shield
herself from judicial scrutiny that would assess whether, within the context of amparo
proceedings, she was responsible or accountable for the abduction of Rodriguez.”

(2) Yes. The doctrine of command responsibility may be used to determine whether respondents
are accountable for and have the duty to address the abduction of Rodriguez in order to enable
the courts to devise remedial measures to protect his rights.

Proceedings under the Rule on the Writ of Amparo do not determine criminal, civil or
administrative liability, but this should not abate the applicability of the doctrine of command

“In the context of amparo proceedings, responsibility may refer to the participation of the
respondents, by action or omission, in enforced disappearance. Accountability, on the other
hand, may attach to respondents who are imputed with knowledge relating to the enforced
disappearance and who carry the burden of disclosure; or those who carry, but have failed to
discharge, the burden of extraordinary diligence in the investigation of the enforced

“Despite maintaining former President Arroyo in the list of respondents in G.R. No. 191805, and
allowing the application of the command responsibility doctrine to amparo and habeas data
proceedings, Rodriguez failed to prove through substantial evidence that former President
Arroyo was responsible or accountable for the violation of his rights to life, liberty and property.
He likewise failed to prove through substantial evidence the accountability or responsibility of
respondents Maj. Gen. Ochoa, Cruz, Pasicolan and Callagan.”

SC affirmed the decision of the CA, but with modifications. The case is dismissed with respect to
respondents former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, P/CSupt. Ameto G. Tolentino, and
P/SSupt. Jude W. Santos, Calog, George Palacpac, Antonio Cruz, Aldwin Pasicolan and Vicent
Callagan for lack of merit.
Neri, a police officer, filed a petition for the issuance of Writ of Habeas Data against Joy, her former common law partner.

According to him, sometime in July 2011, he visited Joy’s condominium and rested for a while. When he arrived at his office, he noticed his
digital camera missing. On August 23, 2011, Joy confronted him about a purported sex video she discovered from the digital camera showing
him and another woman.

He denied the video and demanded the return of the camera, but she refused. They had an altercation where Neri allegedly slammed Joy’s
head against a wall and then walked away.

Because of this, Joy filed several cases against him, including a case for violation of Republic Act 9262 and administrative cases before the
Napolcom, utilising the said video.

The use of the same violated his life to liberty, security and privacy and that of the other woman, thus he had no choice but to file the petition
for issuance of the writ of habeas data.

RTC issued the writ and directed Joy to appear before the RTC and produce Neri’s digital camera, as well as the original and copies of the video,
and to make a return within five days from receipt. In her return,. Joy admitted keeping the memory card of the digital camera and reproducing
the video but only for use as evidence in the cases she filed against Neri. Neri’s petitions should be dismissed because its filing was only aimed
at suppressing the evidence in the cases she filed against him; and she is not engaged in the gathering, collecting, or storing of data regarding
the person of Neri. The RTC granted Neri’s petition and ordered the turn-over of the video to Neri and enjoined Joy from reproducing the
same. It disregarded Joy’s defense that she is not engaged in the collection, gathering and storage of data, and that her acts of reproducing the
same and showing it to other persons (Napolcom) violated Neri’s right to privacy and humiliated him. It clarified that it ruling only on the return
of the video and not on its admissibility as evidence. Dissatisfied, Joy filed the instant petition before the Supreme Court.


A.M. No. 08-1-16-SC, or the Rule on the Writ of Habeas Data (Habeas Data Rule), was conceived as a response, given the lack of effective and
available remedies, to address the extraordinary rise in the number of killings and enforced disappearances[1]. It was conceptualized as a
judicial remedy enforcing the right to privacy, most especially the right to informational privacy of individuals[2], which is defined as “the right
to control the collection, maintenance, use, and dissemination of data about oneself[3].”

As defined in Section 1 of the Habeas Data Rule, the writ of habeas data now stands as “a remedy available to any person whose right to privacy
in life, liberty or security is violated or threatened by an unlawful act or omission of a public official or employee, or of a private individual or
entity engaged in the gathering, collecting or storing of data or information regarding the person, family, home, and correspondence of the
aggrieved party.”

Thus, in order to support a petition for the issuance of such writ, Section 6 of the Habeas Data Rule essentially requires that the petition
sufficiently alleges, among others, “[t]he manner the right to privacy is violated or threatened and how it affects the right to life, liberty or
security of the aggrieved party.” In other words, the petition must adequately show that there exists a nexus between the right to privacy on
the one hand, and the right to life, liberty or security on the other[4]. Corollarily, the allegations in the petition must be supported by
substantial evidence showing an actual or threatened violation of the right to privacy in life, liberty or security of the victim[5]. In this relation, it
bears pointing out that the writ of habeas data will not issue to protect purely property or commercial concerns nor when the grounds invoked
in support of the petitions therefor are vague and doubtful[6].

In this case, the Court finds that Ilagan was not able to sufficiently allege that his right to privacy in life, liberty or security was or would be
violated through the supposed reproduction and threatened dissemination of the subject sex video. While Ilagan purports a privacy interest
in the suppression of this video – which he fears would somehow find its way to Quiapo or be uploaded in the internet for public consumption –
he to failed to explain the connection between such interest and any violation of his right to life, liberty or security.
Gamboa v. Chan, G.R. No. 193636, 24 July 2012

Gamboa alleged that the Philippine National Police in Ilocos Norte (PNP–Ilocos Norte)
conducted a series of surveillance operations against her and her aides, and classified her as
someone who keeps a Private Army Group (PAG). Purportedly without the benefit of data
verification, PNP–Ilocos Norte forwarded the information gathered on her to the Zeñarosa
Commission, thereby causing her inclusion in the Report’s enumeration of individuals
maintaining PAGs. Contending that her right to privacy was violated and her reputation
maligned and destroyed, Gamboa filed a Petition for the issuance of a writ of habeas data against
respondents in their capacities as officials of the PNP-Ilocos Norte.


Whether or not the petition for the issuance of writ of habeas data is proper when the right to
privacy is invoked as opposed to the state’s interest in preserving the right to life, liberty or



The writ of habeas data is an independent and summary remedy designed to protect the image,
privacy, honor, information, and freedom of information of an individual, and to provide a forum
to enforce one’s right to the truth and to informational privacy. It seeks to protect a person’s right
to control information regarding oneself, particularly in instances in which such information is
being collected through unlawful means in order to achieve unlawful ends. It must be
emphasized that in order for the privilege of the writ to be granted, there must exist a nexus
between the right to privacy on the one hand, and the right to life, liberty or security on the other.

In this case, the Court ruled that Gamboa was unable to prove through substantial evidence that
her inclusion in the list of individuals maintaining PAGs made her and her supporters susceptible
to harassment and to increased police surveillance. In this regard, respondents sufficiently
explained that the investigations conducted against her were in relation to the criminal cases in
which she was implicated. As public officials, they enjoy the presumption of regularity, which
she failed to overcome. [T]he state interest of dismantling PAGs far outweighs the alleged
intrusion on the private life of Gamboa, especially when the collection and forwarding by the
PNP of information against her was pursuant to a lawful mandate. Therefore, the privilege of the
writ of habeas data must be denied.
PHILIPPINES, respondents.

Two local media men, Stanley Jalbuena, Enrique Lingan, in Lucena City went to the police
station to report alledged indecent show in one of the night establishment shows in the City. At
the station, a heated confrontation followed between victim Lingan and accused policeman
Navarro who was then having drinks outside the headquarters, lead to a fisticuffs. The victim
was hit with the handle of the accused's gun below the left eyebrow, followed by a fist blow,
resulted the victim to fell and died under treatment. The exchange of words was recorded on
tape, specifically the frantic exclamations made by Navarro after the altercation that it was the
victim who provoked the fight. During the trial, Jalbuena, the other media man , testified.
Presented in evidence to confirm his testimony was a voice recording he had made of the heated
discussion at the police station between the accused police officer Navarro and the deceased,
Lingan, which was taken without the knowledge of the two.

1. Whether or not the voice recording is admissible in evidence in view of RA 4200, which
prohibits wire tapping.

2. Whether the mitigating circumstances of sufficient provocation or threat on the part of the
offended party and lack of intention to commit so grave a wrong may be appreciated in favor of
the accused.

1. The answer is affirmative, the tape is admissible in view of RA 4200, which prohibits
wire tapping. Jalbuena's testimony is confirmed by the voice recording he had made.

The law prohibits the overhearing, intercepting, or recording of private communications

(Ramirez v Court of Appeals, 248 SCRA 590 [1995]). Since the exchange between petitioner
Navarro and Lingan was not private, its tape recording is not prohibited.

3. The remarks of Lingan, which immediately preceded the acts of the accused, constituted
sufficient provocation. Provocation is said to be any unjust or improper conduct of the
offended party capable of exciting, annoying or irritating someone. The provocation must
be sufficient and must immediately precede the act; and in order to be sufficient, it must
be adequate to excite a person to commit the wrong, which must be accordingly
proportionate in gravity. The mitigating circumstance of lack of intention to commit so
grave a wrong must also be considered. The exclamations made by Navarro after the
scuffle that it was Lingan who provoked him showed that he had no intent to kill the
Ramirez v. CA, G.R. No. 93833, 248 SCRA 590, September 28, 1995
The language of the Anti-Wire Tapping Law is clear and unambiguous.
The provision clearly makes it illegal for ANY person, NOT AUTHORIZED BY ALL
PARTIES to any private communication to secretly record such communication by means of a
tape recorder.
A civil case was filed by petitioner Ramirez alleging that the private respondent, Garcia,
allegedly insulted and humiliated her during a confrontation in the office, in an offensive manner
contrary to morals, good customs and public policy.
To support her claim, petitioner produced a verbatim transcript of the event and sought moral
In response, private respondent filed a criminal case alleging violation of ANTI-WIRE
TAPPING LAW for secretly taping the confrontation.
Whether the act of recording through a tape constitutes an offense? YES.
The Court ruled that the language of the law is clear and unambiguous. The provision clearly
makes it illegal for ANY person, NOT AUTHORIZED BY ALL PARTIES to any private
communication to secretly record such communication by means of a tape recorder.
The law makes no distinction as to whether the party sought to be penalized by the statute ought
to be a party other than or different from those involved in the private communication. The
statute's intent to penalize all persons unauthorized to make such recording is underscored by the
use of the qualifier "any".
The nature of the conversations is immaterial to a violation of the statute. The substance of the
same need not be specifically alleged in the information. The mere allegation that an individual
made a secret recording of a private communication by means of a tape recorder would suffice to
constitute an offense under Section 1 of R.A. 4200.
Petitioner's contention that the phrase "private communication" in Section 1 of R.A. 4200 does
not include "private conversations" narrows the ordinary meaning of the word "communication"
to a point of absurdity. In its ordinary signification, communication connotes the act of sharing
or imparting signification, communication connotes the act of sharing or imparting, as in a
conversation, or signifies the "process by which meanings or thoughts are shared between
individuals through a common system of symbols (as language signs or gestures)."
These definitions are broad enough to include verbal or non-verbal, written or expressive
communications of "meanings or thoughts" which are likely to include the emotionally-charged
exchange between petitioner and private respondent, in the privacy of the latter's office.
In Gaanan v. Intermediate Appellate Court, a case which dealt with the issue of telephone
wiretapping, we held that the use of a telephone extension for the purpose of overhearing a
private conversation without authorization did not violate R.A. 4200 because a telephone
extension devise was neither among those "device(s) or arrangement(s)" enumerated, following
the principle that "penal statutes must be construed strictly in favor of the accused."
In this case, the use of tape recorder falls under the devices enumerated in the law (Dictaphone,
Dictagraph, Detectaphone, Walkie-talkie, and Tape recorder).Therefore, the act of recording
through the tape constitutes an offense.
The instant case turns on a different note, because the applicable facts and circumstances
pointing to a violation of R.A. 4200 suffer from no ambiguity, and the statute itself explicitly
mentions the unauthorized "recording" of private communications with the use of tape-recorders
as among the acts punishable.

G.R. No. 107383, February 20, 1996

Petitioner: Cecilia Zulueta

Respondents: Court of Appeals and Alfredo Martin

Ponente: J. Mendoza


This is a petition to review the decision of the Court of Appeals, affirming the decision of the
Regional Trial Court of Manila (Branch X) which ordered petitioner to return documents and
papers taken by her from private respondent's clinic without the latter's knowledge and consent.

Petitioner Cecilia Zulueta is the wife of private respondent Alfredo Martin. On March 26, 1982,
petitioner entered the clinic of her husband, a doctor of medicine, and in the presence of her
mother, a driver and private respondent's secretary, forcibly opened the drawers and cabinet in
her husband's clinic and took 157 documents consisting of private correspondence between Dr.
Martin and his alleged paramours, greetings cards, cancelled checks, diaries, Dr. Martin's
passport, and photographs. The documents and papers were seized for use in evidence in a case
for legal separation and for disqualification from the practice of medicine which petitioner had
filed against her husband.


(1) Whether or not the documents and papers in question are inadmissible in evidence;


(1) No. Indeed the documents and papers in question are inadmissible in evidence. The
constitutional injunction declaring "the privacy of communication and correspondence [to be]
inviolable" is no less applicable simply because it is the wife (who thinks herself aggrieved by
her husband's infidelity) who is the party against whom the constitutional provision is to be
enforced. The only exception to the prohibition in the Constitution is if there is a "lawful order
[from a] court or when public safety or order requires otherwise, as prescribed by law." Any
violation of this provision renders the evidence obtained inadmissible "for any purpose in any

The intimacies between husband and wife do not justify any one of them in breaking the drawers
and cabinets of the other and in ransacking them for any telltale evidence of marital infidelity. A
person, by contracting marriage, does not shed his/her integrity or his right to privacy as an
individual and the constitutional protection is ever available to him or to her.

The law insures absolute freedom of communication between the spouses by making it
privileged. Neither husband nor wife may testify for or against the other without the consent of
the affected spouse while the marriage subsists. Neither may be examined without the consent of
the other as to any communication received in confidence by one from the other during the
marriage, save for specified exceptions. But one thing is freedom of communication; quite
another is a compulsion for each one to share what one knows with the other. And this has
nothing to do with the duty of fidelity that each owes to the other.
Waterouse Drug Corporation v. NLRC
Posted on April 2, 2013 by winnieclaire
G.R. No. 113271. October 16, 1997

Facts: Antonia Melodia Catolico was hired as a pharmacist by Waterous Drug Corp.

YSP Inc., a supplier of medicine, sold to Waterous, thru Catolico, 10 bottles of Voren Tablets at
P384 per unit. However, previews P.O.s issued to YSP, Inc. showed that the price per bottle is
P320.00. Verification was made to YSP, Inc. to determine the discrepancy and it was found that
the cost per bottle was indeed overpriced.

YSP, Inc. Accounting Department (Ms. Estelita Reyes) confirmed that the difference represents
refund of jack-up price of ten bottles of Voren tablets per sales invoice, which was paid to Ms.
Catolico. Said check was sent in an envelope addressed to Catolico.

Catolico denied receiving the same. However, Saldana, the clerk of Waterous Drug Corp.
confirmed that she saw an open envelope with a check amounting P640 payable to Catolico.

Waterous Drug Corp. ordered the termination of Catolico for acts of dishonesty.

NLRC: Dismissed the Petition. Evidence of respondents (check from YSP) being rendered
inadmissible, by virtue of the constitutional right invoked by complainants.

Petitioners: In the light of the decision in the People v. Marti, the constitutional protection
against unreasonable searches and seizures refers to the immunity of one’s person from
interference by government and cannot be extended to acts committed by private individuals so
as to bring it within the ambit of alleged unlawful intrusion by the government.

Issue: W/N the check is admissible as evidence

Held: Yes.

Ratio: (People vs. Marti) Marti ruling: The Bill of Rights does not protect citizens from
unreasonable searches and seizures perpetrated by private individuals.

It is not true, as counsel for Catolico claims, that the citizens have no recourse against such
assaults. On the contrary, and as said counsel admits, such an invasion gives rise to both criminal
and civil liabilities. Despite this, the SC ruled that there was insufficient evidence of cause for
the dismissal of Catolico from employment Suspicion is not among the valid causes provided by
the Labor Code for the termination of Employment.

G.R. NO. 135882
June 27, 2001
Pardo, J.

FACTS: Marquez, branch manager of Union Bank Julia Vargas, received an Order from
Ombudsman to produce several bank documents for purposes of inspection in camera. The
Ombudsman wanted to conduct such in camera inspection on the accounts based on a trail of
manager’s checks by a certain Trivinio who purchased 51 managers checks for a total amount of
P272M. Marquez agreed to the inspection.
Marquez wrote to the Ombudsman saying that the accounts in question cannot readily be
identified and asked for time to respond to the order. The Ombudsman replied that the Bank
should have preserved records despite the accounts being dormant.

Ombudsman issued order to direct Marquez to produce the bank documents due to the
unjustified delay by the Bank since the in camera inspection had already been extended twice.

Marquez filed for declaratory relief to clear the rights of petitioners under the bank secrecy law

ISSUE/S: Whether the in camera inspection orders are allowed as an exception to the bank
secrecy law? NO

RULING: The in camera inspection is not allowed. There being no pending case before a court
of competent jurisdiction.
An exception to the bank secrecy law is when the money deposited is the subject matter of a

Therefore, it may be allowed on the ground of a pending case when:

o The case is pending in court of competent jurisdiction
o The account must be clearly identified
o Inspection is limited to the subject matter of the pending case
o The Bank personnel and account holder must be notified to be present during the inspection
o Such inspection may cover only the account identified in the pending case

The order for in camera inspection is based on a pending investigation of the Ombudsman for
violations of RA 3019, Sec 3(e)(g). Clearly, there is no pending litigation yet before a court of
competent authority. It is only an investigation by the Ombudsman.


A.O. No. 308 was issued by President Fidel V. Ramos on December 12, 1996 for the Adoption
of a National Computerized Identification Reference System. It was published in four
newspapers of general circulation on January. Petitioner filed the instant petition against
respondents, on the grounds that:

1. it is a usurpation of the power of Congress to legislate,

2. it impermissibly intrudes on our citizenry’s protected zone of privacy.


Whether there is a violation of the Right to Privacy as enshrined in the Bill of Rights.


The essence of privacy is the “right to be left alone.” The right to privacy as such is accorded
recognition independently of its identification with liberty; in itself, it is fully deserving of
constitutional protection.

The Court prescind from the premise that the right to privacy is a fundamental right guaranteed
by the Constitution, hence, it is the burden of government to show that A.O. No. 308 is justified
by some compelling state interest and that it is narrowly drawn. A.O. No. 308 is predicated on
two considerations:

1. the need to provides our citizens and foreigners with the facility to conveniently transact
business with basic service and social security providers and other government instrumentalities
and ;
2. the need to reduce, if not totally eradicate, fraudulent transactions and misrepresentations by
persons seeking basic services.

It is debatable whether the interests are compelling enough to warrant the issuance of the said
order. The broadness, vagueness, and overbreadth of A.O. No. 308 which if implemented will
put our people’s right to privacy in clear and present danger. In the case at bar, the threat comes
from which by issuing A.O. No. 308 pressures the people to surrender their privacy by giving
information about themselves on the pretext that it will facilitate delivery of basic services.

Petition is granted. A.O. No. 308 is unconstitutional.