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OLAGUER V. MILITARY COMMISSION [GR L-54558, 22 May 1987] IN RE: Sec. 18, Art.

VII, 1987 Constitution FACTS: On 24 December 1979, herein Petitioners all, of which, are civilians were arrested by the military and were subsequently detained at Camp Crame and were then transferred to Camp Bagong Diwa. Sometime in 1980, the then Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces created the Respondent Military Commission No. 34 for the purposes of trying the said Petitioners of their alleged crimes. Hastily, the said Respondent Commission sentenced the Petitioners to death. Petitioners now come to the Supreme Court to challenge the said Military Commission. ISSUE: Whether or not the actions of the military are Constitutional? HELD: It must be noted that in 1981, President Marcos issued Proclamation No. 2045, thereby officially lifting Martial Law. Furthermore, between 1981 and 1986, the Petitioners were given provisional liberty thereby rendering their Petitions for Habeas Corpus moot and academic. It has been held in a long line of cases that Military Commissions/Tribunals have no jurisdiction to try civilians for alleged offenses when Civil Courts are open and functioning. Such being the case here, the respondent Military Commissions actions of trying the Petitioners and rendering sentence is null and void. And assuming that the same does have jurisdiction, the fact that the trial(s) were conducted hastily i.e., the Petitioners were never actually given a chance to defend themselves or even present their own evidences due process was actually denied to the Petitioners; hence, their sentence should be treated as unconstitutional.