Tuesday, January 17, 2017

"Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights: Implementing the United Nations ‘Protect, Respect and Remedy’ Framework"



"x x x.

This publication contains the "Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights: Implementing the United Nations ‘Protect, Respect and Remedy’ Framework", which were developed by the Special Representative of the Secretary-General on the issue
of human rights and transnational corporations and other business enterprises. The Special Representative annexed the Guiding Principles to his final report to the Human Rights Council (A/HRC/17/31), which also includes an introduction to the Guiding Principles and an overview of the process that led to their development. The Human Rights Council endorsed the Guiding Principles in its resolution 17/4
of 16 June 2011.

x x x."

Monday, January 16, 2017

Free legal aid - Pasay Paranaque Las Pinas Muntinlupa area under the IBP PPLM Chapter jurisdiction; person to contact.


Contact:


Atty. Antonio MANZANO 

(1) Las Pinas City Bar Association

E. Pascual St. corner M. Yllana St.
BF Resort Village, Las Piñas City
Cell No.0920-6033777
Call:
Tel. No.8729149
Fax No.8716008

(2) Committee on Free Legal Aid
Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP)
Pasay Paranaque Las Pinas
Muntinlupa (PPLM) Chapter

Address:
2nd Flr., Pasay City Hall
Harrison St., Pasay City
Call:
Tel/Fax No. 831-1477, 832-7993

Free legal aid - Las Pinas City

Atty. Antonio MANZANOChairman,
Las Pinas City Bar Association
E. Pascual St. corner M. Yllana St.
BF Resort Village, Las Piñas City
Cell No.0920-6033777
Tel. No.8729149
Fax No.8716008

Chairman
Committee on Free Legal Aid
Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP)
Pasay Paranaque Las Pinas
Muntinlupa (PPLM) Chapter
2nd Flr., Pasay City Hall
Harrison St., Pasay City
Tel/Fax No. 831-1477, 832-7993

Friday, January 13, 2017

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Demurrer to evidence; sample

We are sharing a demurrer to evidence in a criminal case that our law office prepared for legal research purposes of our readers.


DEMURRER TO EVIDENCE

          THE ACCUSED X X X X  (“X X X X ”), by undersigned counsel, respectfully states:

I.                  THE INFORMATIONS.

1.      GRAVE THREATS. - The Information for one count of GRAVE THREATS against the accused X X X X , docketed as Crim. Case No. M-PSY- xxx-CR, alleges that:

1.1.             The felony was allegedly committed on 8 July 2010 in Xxx City.

1.2.            The accused X X X X  allegedly  THREATENED the private complainant X X X X  [i].

1.3.            The alleged threat consisted of  an “infliction of a wrong amounting to a crime”.

1.4.            More specifically, the accused X X X X  allegedly threatened X X X X  that he would “gun down (X X X X ) should he rise from his seat”.

1.5.             The accused X X X X  allegedly acted “without justifiable cause”.

1.6.            The accused X X X X  was allegedly “moved by spite and personal resentment” against X X X X .

1.7.             That alleged purpose of the accused X X X X  was to “(collect) money” from X X X X .

1.8.            The accused X X X X  allegedly “failed to attain” all the elements of the felony charged.

1.9.          The accused X X X X  allegedly “(created) fear and anxiety in the mind (of X X X X ) that the threat will be carried out

2.    GRAVE COERCION (First Count). - The Information for the first count of GRAVE COERCION against the accused X X X X  and his co-accused X X X X  , docketed as Crim. Case No. M-PSY- xxx-CR, alleges that:

2.1.            The first count[ii] of the felony of GRAVE COERCION was allegedly committed by the two accused X X X X  and X X X X  on 15 May 2010 allegedly in Xxx City against the same private complainant X X X X .

2.2.           The two accused allegedly acted in CONSPIRACY with each other.

2.3.           The two accused allegedly acted “without any authority of law”.

2.4.           The two accused allegedly applied “threat and intimidation”.

2.5.            The two accused allegedly “compel(led) (X X X X ) to pay the amount of P500,000.00”.

2.6.           The two accused allegedly uttered the following words:

PUTANG INA MO MAGBAYAD KA NG UTANG MO KUNGHINDI ITUTUMBA KITA MADAMI NA AKONG ITINUMBA SA LAGUNA AT ISUSUNOD KITA.

3.    GRAVE COERCION (Second Count). - The Information for second count of GRAVE COERCION against the accused X X X X  and his co-accused X X X X  , docketed as Crim. Case No. M-PSY- xxx-CR, alleges that:

3.1.            The second count[iii] of the felony of GRAVE COERCION was allegedly committed by the two accused X X X X  and X X X X  on (the earlier date of) 30 April 2010 in Xxx City against the same private complainant X X X X .

3.2.           The two accused allegedly acted in CONSPIRACY with each other.

3.3.           The two accused allegedly acted “without any authority of law”.

3.4.           The two accused allegedly applied “threat and intimidation”.

3.5.            The two accused allegedly “compel(led) (X X X X ) to pay the amount of P300,000.00”.

3.6.        The two accused allegedly “pull(ed) out a gun and plac(ed) said gun on the table”.
  

II.               PROSECUTION EVIDENCE.

A.   WITNESSESES.

1.      The prosecution presented two witnesses, namely, the private complainant himself, X X X X , and x x x.

2.    X X X X  testified on various dates: February 15, 2012, June 25, 2012, September 5, 2012, December 12, 2012, February 18, 2013, July 15, 2013, February 19, 2014, June 23, 2014, February 11, 2015.

3.    xxx testified on December 9, 2015.

A.1. – TESTIMONY OF PRIVATE COMPLAINANT JOSELITO X X X X .



4.    Testimony of X X X X  Given on February 15, 2012. (Direct examination of X X X X  by private prosecutor Atty. A. X X X X ). - The testimony of X X X X  given on February 15, 2012 basically shows that:

4.1.          He was the president of X X X X  HAULER TRADINGS AND CONSTRUCTION (“X X X X ”).

4.2.        Accused X X X X  was the vice president and a director of the X X X X .

4.3.        X X X X  consisted of the following directors/officers: (a) private complainant X X X X  as president; (b) accused X X X X  as vice president; (c) xxx as treasurer; (d) X X X X  as director; and (e) X X X X  as corporate secretary.

4.4.        Accused X X X X   provided financing for xxx.

4.5.         X X X X  was engaged in hauling of mining, construction and trading.

4.6.        X X X X  had a hauling service agreement with X X X X  MINING (actually named X X X X  CONSTRUCTION AND GENERAL SERVICES) in Zambales. But X X X X  was unable to mobilize due to lack of funds.

4.7.         The incorporators of xxx met to look for financing. Accused X X X X , vice president, referred his friend, i.e., accused X X X X .

4.8.        X X X X  and X X X X  agreed to look for funds to finance the operations of X X X X .

4.9.        X X X X , X X X X  and X X X X  agreed that X X X X  would raise One Million Pesos (P1,000,000.00) as loan for X X X X  would provide for a financier from Singapore. X X X X  would be the guarantor of X X X X .

4.10.    Ten Percent (10%) was deducted from the loan, or P100,000.00, as Commission for accused X X X X .


4.11.      The five signatories to the Memorandum of Agreement (loan agreement) were accused X X X X , second prosecution witness xxx, private complainant X X X X , X X X X  (actually named X X X X ), and accused X X X X .

4.12.    The principal creditor from Singapore was X X X X  SINGAPORE (“X X X X ”). X X X X  and X X X X  executed an agreement to lend funds to X X X X  (with X X X X  as guarantor).

4.13.    After deducting the P100,000.00 commission of X X X X, X X X X  (treasurer and second prosecution witness) received P100,000.00 out of the loan as payment for funds he had advanced. The balance of Eight Hundred Thousand Pesos (P800,000.00) was used for the operations of X X X X .

4.14.    X X X X  identified the financial report of X X X X  showing that the P800,000.00 loan balance was used for the operations of X X X X .

4.15.     X X X X  operated for two months to service X X X X . X X X X  was not able to collect from X X X X . Hence, X X X X  stopped its operations. X X X X  billed X X X X  and sent it a demand letter.  

4.16.    When X X X X  failed to pay X X X X , conflict ensured between X X X X  and X X X X , who was collecting from the former.

4.17.     X X X X  alleged in general terms that X X X X  “coerced” him; “defamed” him; “threatened” him as an xxx confidential agent.

But X X X X   did not give any concrete details and credible proofs thereof.

4.18.    X X X X  was allegedly “forced to pay” X X X X  P300,000.00.

But X X X X  did not give any concrete details and credible proofs of the “force” allegedly inflicted on him by X X X X .



4.19.    X X X X  and X X X X  met at DELLA BAIA RESTAURANT on Macapagal Avenue, Xxx City. X X X X  and accused X X X X  were drinking when accused X X X X  arrived. X X X X  alleged that X X X X  “threatened” him by “pulling out his gun” and “putting it on the table”; that the two accused “defamed” him; that X X X X  allegedly said, “Kung di mo ko babayaran may paglalagyan ka”.

X X X X  paid P300,000.00 to X X X X , who signed the petty cash voucher, dated April 30, 2010, the same day X X X X  paid the amount.

Aside from his bare allegations, X X X X  did not offer any credible proof of the alleged “threat” by the two accused

4.20.  X X X X  alleged that X X X X  “poked his gun” and told him to pay P500,000.00 on May 15, 2010. He left for fear that the accused would “kill” him. After April 30, 2010, X X X X  allegedly continued to “threaten” X X X X .

X X X X  did not offer any credible proofs of such “threat to kill” him nor the concrete details thereof.

4.21.    On May 15, 2010, X X X X  sent xxx (actually named X X X X ) to give a check to X X X X  amounting to P500,000.00. X X X X  signed a check voucher for the purpose.  

X X X X  did not state where the incident took place for criminal jurisdiction purposes.

Xxx (X X X X ) was not presented to corroborate the foregoing matter.

The locations of the drawee bank and the drawer bank were not offered for purposes of criminal jurisdiction.  

4.22.   X X X X  alleged that X X X X  “continued to threaten his life and his family”, thus: “Putang ina mo magbayad ka ng utang mo kung hindi papatayin ko mga pamilya mo pati mga anak mo”, including X X X X . X X X X  alleged that X X X X  told him. “Alam ko ang labas ng mg anak mo sa eskuwela pati paglabas ng asawa mo sa Bahay.” 


Aside from his bare allegation, X X X X  did not offer concrete details and credible proofs proving the alleged “threat” of X X X X .

5.     Testimony of X X X X  Given on June 25, 2012. – The testimony of X X X X  given on June 25, 2012 basically shows that:

5.1.          X X X X  alleged that X X X X  continued to “call and threatened” him to pay P438,000.00, representing the balance and the interest of the loan.

5.2.         X X X X  alleged that on June 14, 2010 accused X X X X  and X X X X  came to his house at No. xxx, xxx Road, xxx City, when he was out of the house at the time, and they allegedly “dragged” his gate, “talked to his wife”, and told his wife “Babalikan namin ang asawa mo, magpaglalagyan siya”.

5.3.         On June 25, 2010, X X X X  and his wife went to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) in Manila because they were allegedly “under threat” to file a complaint.    

5.4.         X X X X  alleged that on July 3, 2010 X X X X  called him up and asked for a meeting and that the NBI set up a meeting and entrapment operation on July 8, 2010. X X X X  alleged that X X X X  called him up “to sit down” (discuss and resolve the unpaid loan issue) with the board of directors of X X X X , namely, accused X X X X , X X X X , X X X X , xxx, and himself (X X X X ). X X X X  alleged that X X X X  “was forcing” him to pay P438,000.00 for the balance of the loan. X X X X  coordinated with the NBI to set up the entrapment against the two accused X X X X  and X X X X . He executed an affidavit at the NBI before agent xxx.     

5.5.         X X X X  set up the entrapment operation at McDonald Restaurant on Macapagal Ave., Xxx City on July 8, 2010

5.6.         During the entrapment, X X X X  arrived early. He was followed by X X X X  and X X X X  (director). The NBI agent arrived early and stayed at a table near X X X X . X X X X  arrived. Then, X X X X  (treasurer) arrived later. 

5.7.         X X X X  alleged that X X X X  told him that he had to pay the latter P438,000.00. He told X X X X  he had no more money because he had previously paid him P800,000.00. X X X X  asked his fellow directors X X X X  and X X X X  “how we will settle” the said amount. X X X X  alleged that his fellow director X X X X  was “forcing me to pay by myself only”. X X X X  rejected it because he had no more money. X X X X  alleged that X X X X  “showed me the gun he was carrying tucked on his waistline” and told him, “Babaunan nya ako ng bala sa ulo”. 

Note that X X X X  did not testify to corroborate the foregoing “threat”.

Note that, as per X X X X , X X X X  did not pull out his gun or placed on the table or performed any threatening act.

X X X X  alleged that X X X X  “showed his gun tucked on his waistline”. X X X X  did not offer proofs as to the details thereof (“showed his gun”).

Note that in the testimony of second prosecution witness X X X X , infra, no offer was made that X X X X  threatened or coerced X X X X  or pulled out his gun or pointed his gun at X X X X . See Part A-2, Paragraphs 13, et. seq., infra.

5.8.         X X X X  gave the marked money to X X X X . He removed his eyeglass as a signal to the NBI. The NBI arrested accused X X X X , X X X X  (director), AND X X X X  (director).

5.9.         The three were arrested and brought to and interrogated at the NBI Manila. A Cal. 45 was recovered “from the waist” of X X X X , as per X X X X .

Note that X X X X  did not testify that X X X X  pulled out his gun or pointed it to him.

Note that X X X X  did not explain why X X X X  alone was referred by the NBI to the Office of the City Prosecutor of Xxx City to be indicted via inquest and why X X X X  was freed by the NBI while X X X X  was freed after six days of detention.

6.    Testimony of X X X X  Given on September 5, 2012. (Cross examination by Atty. xxx , counsel for accused X X X X ). - – The testimony of X X X X  given on September 5, 2012 basically shows that:

6.1.          Many meetings were held by the X X X X  directors and X X X X  (with X X X X ) to negotiate the subject loan from X X X X  and his principal in SINGAPORE.

6.2.        The directors (X X X X , X X X X  AND X X X X ) with X X X X  and X X X X  (a friend of X X X X  and who appeared to be the “loan arranger/consultant’, as per X X X X ) all signed the loan agreement and the chattel mortgage of the car of X X X X .

Six persons were present during the signing of the loan agreement: X X X X  (president), accused X X X X  (vice president), X X X X  (treasurer), X X X X  (director), accused X X X X  and X X X X  (loan arranger [?]). All were signatories to the documents.

6.3.        The chattel mortgagor was X X X X  (whose car was the security). The mortgagees, as per the documents, were X X X X  and X X X X . He did not explain the legal basis why X X X X  became a mortgagee.

6.4.        After signing the documents on February 12, 2010, X X X X  (as president of debtor X X X X ) received the P1,000,000.00 in cash from X X X X  and X X X X . Then, he released P100,000.00 to X X X X  as commission.

6.5.         Note that during this cross examination on this particular date nothing was offered by X X X X  showing the alleged criminal guilt of accused X X X X .

7.     Testimony of X X X X  Given on December 12, 2012. (Continuation of cross-examination by Atty. X X X X ). – The testimony of X X X X  given on December 12, 2012 basically shows that:

7.1.          X X X X  alleged that the incident at the restaurant-bar Della Baia on Macapagal Ave. in Xxx City took place on April 30, 2010 from 7:00 PM to 12:00 Midnight/AM the next day (a five-hour event).

7.2.         On the said date, place and time X X X X  was with accused X X X X , COL. Xxx, COL. Xxx and accused X X X X .

X X X X  went there with accused X X X X . X X X X  arrived after two hours. As a bar, it was dimly lighted. It had many tables. It was as big as the courtroom. There was one security guard at the gate. There were many waiters.

That was the date, time and place where X X X X  paid X X X X  the amount of P300,000.00 allegedly from his own money, covered by a  voucher which was signed by X X X X .     

7.3.         X X X X  cannot recall if he met accused X X X X  on May 15, 2010. X X X X  issued the P500,000.00 check payment to X X X X . He gave the check to X X X X  for delivery to X X X X . X X X X  did not meet X X X X  on May 15, 2010.

Nothing happened on May 15, 2010 except that he gave the check to X X X X  for delivery to X X X X , as per X X X X .

It appears no personal meeting took place between X X X X  and X X X X  on May 15, 2010.

8.    Testimony of X X X X  Given on February 18, 2013. (Continuation of cross examination of X X X X  by Atty. X X X X ). – The testimony of X X X X  given on February 18, 2013 basically shows that:


8.1.          X X X X  alleged that on April 30, 2010 from 7:00 PM to 12:00 Midnight of the next day at Della Baia Restaurant both accused X X X X  and X X X X  told him, “Kung di mo babayran may paglalagyan ka.”  He alleged that both accused said “something like that”  and “magkasunod.

He and accused X X X X  arrived there between 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM in two separate cars in a convoy.

X X X X  alleged that the two accused were always calling him to collect, thus, in the morning of said date, he withdrew P300,000.00 to pay X X X X  in the evening of said date at the said venue.

X X X X , X X X X  and X X X X  were sitting on one table. On the next table, their friends were sitting (referring to xxx and xxx, supra,  and the driver of accused X X X X ). They were with the two colonels because every Friday the two colonels and accused X X X X  had a get-together at the venue. The two colonels were friends of accused X X X X . The distance between the two tables was five meters. The sequence of the arrival of the personalities was as follows: first, the two colonels; second, X X X X  and accused X X X X ; third, the accused X X X X .  

8.2.        X X X X  alleged that after he paid P300,000.00 to X X X X , the latter “pulled out his gun” (this time a .22 Cal gun, not a Cal. .45 gun as he had previously alleged).

He claimed that the colonels, sitting nearby, did not know what was happening.

He alleged that, prior to that date, “every day I (was) being threatened” by the two accused to pay.

X X X X  did not offer any concrete details and positive proofs of the alleged “daily threats.

9.    Testimony of X X X X  Given on July 15, 2013. (Cross examination by Atty. xxx, former counsel for accused X X X X ).– The testimony of X X X X  given on July 15, 2013 basically shows that:


9.1.          X X X X  alleged that accused X X X X  and X X X X  arranged a meeting with him on April 30, 2010 at Delia Baia on Macapagal Ave., Xxx City (the subject of the grave coercion case). X X X X  had been there many times. He had met the two colonels there many times. X X X X , X X X X  and the two colonels met there every Friday as a get-together. X X X X  arrived there with accused X X X X  and his driver xxx, with the two colonels (riding in X X X X ’s car), drove to the venue in a convoy. X X X X  had a driver. After two hours, X X X X  arrived.

As per X X X X , they were all occupying ONE TABLE (contrary to the earlier statement of X X X X  that the two colonels occupied a separate table, five meters away). They are all having a “kwentuhan” on one table. The others were drinking beer. He was drinking pineapple juice.

9.2.        X X X X , in a contradiction, this time alleged that the two colonels, et al were on a separate table when he paid X X X X  the sum of P300,000.00 who thereafter allegedly poked his gun at him.

9.3.        This time, X X X X  claimed that the two accused X X X X  and X X X X  were with him on one table when that happened. 

9.4.      In re: the second charge of grave coercion that allegedly happened on May 15, 2010, X X X X  was not present during the alleged incident. He merely gave the P500,000.00 check to xxx for delivery to X X X X .

The P500,000.00 check was given by X X X X  to X X X X  allegedly at “TRINOMA” (Quezon City, outside the jurisdiction of this Court).

X X X X  alleged the P300,000 he paid X X X X  on April 30, 2010 came from his own pocket (from his joint xxx account with his wife).

9.5.         After the April 30, 2010 incident, X X X X  did not talk with anybody about it (which was a strange behavior for a victim of an alleged crime).

9.6.        X X X X  affirmed that the gun of X X X X  was a Cal. 22 handgun (not a Cal. 45 gun). Later, in the same testimony he changed it to Cal. 45 gun (this time, referring to the NBI entrapment on July 8, 2010).

In fine, X X X X  alleged that on April 30, 2010 the gun used by X X X X  was a Cal. 22 and that during the entrapment on July 8, 2010 the gun used by X X X X  was a Cal. 45A glaring contradiction.

9.7.         During the NBI entrapment on July 8, 2010, X X X X  was at McDonald’s, Macapagal Ave., Xxx City with X X X X , X X X X , X X X X , and a driver. Accused X X X X  came late, he added. They occupied one table.

9.8.        X X X X  allegedly threatened X X X X  on the same table in the presence of their companions X X X X , X X X X , X X X X , and a Driver.

9.9.        X X X X  allegedly asked for the July 8, 2010 meeting. X X X X  stated that he coordinated with his directors to attend it.

10.            Testimony of X X X X  Given on February 19, 2014. (Continuation of cross examination of X X X X  by Atty. X X X X , new counsel for accused X X X X ). – The testimony of X X X X  given on February 19, 2014 basically shows that:

10.1.     From July16, 2013 (last date of testimony of X X X X ) up to February 19, 2014 (his current testimony date then), or a period of seven months, X X X X  failed (“forgot” was the word used by X X X X , citing his hypertension) to write the xxx branch manager to issue a certified copy of his alleged withdrawal slip showing the alleged withdrawal from his personal account of the amount of P300,000.00 that he paid to X X X X . 

10.2.    X X X X  promised to submit the next hearing authentic proofs issued by the branch manager showing his alleged withdrawal of P300,000.00 and P500,000.00 from his personal account to pay X X X X .

10.3.     He alleged that he had called many board/management meetings to discuss the P1,000,000.00 loan of X X X X  from X X X X  but he could not recall if minutes thereof were recorded.


10.4. He promised to produce the minutes and other corporate records.  This promise was not performed by X X X X  until the prosecution rested its case.

(The counsel for X X X X  intended to use them as exculpatory proofs in favor of X X X X ).

Note that X X X X , in failing to present the same despite a promise in open court, can be presumed to have intentionally hidden the same because, if presented, they would be adverse to his claim of criminal guilt on the part of accused X X X X .

10.5.    X X X X  did not even know the last name of his Corporate Secretary (xxx), a strange behavior on the part of a company president. He had to be assisted by his own records.

10.6.    X X X X  could not offer proofs of any board resolution or formal communication issued by him, as president, showing that official corporate efforts were made by X X X X  to settle and perform their unpaid loan obligation to X X X X .

11.  Testimony of X X X X  Given on June 23, 2014. (Continuation of cross examination of X X X X  by Atty. xxx). – The testimony of X X X X  given on June 23, 2014 basically shows that:

11.1.       X X X X  failed to present authenticated withdrawals slip of his bank proving his alleged withdrawal of P800,000.00 (in two tranches, i.e., P300,000.00 on April 30, 2010 and P500,000.00 on May 15, 2010) that he had paid X X X X  allegedly using his own money. But he presented a bank statement.


11.2.      From 2010 to 2014 (when he testified on cross), or for four long years, X X X X  did not issue a demand letter to the board of X X X X  to reimburse him the total of P800,000.00 that he had paid to X X X X  allegedly out of his “own money”. A strange behavior for a businessman who must recover his own losses.

11.3.      X X X X  likewise did not ask a lawyer to serve such a demand letter to the directors of X X X X .

11.4.      X X X X  failed to perform his promise to the Court to bring the corporate records of the P1,000,000.00 loan of X X X X  to X X X X  and its records of payments, etc.

11.5.      After four long years, i.e., 2010 to 2014, X X X X  had not taken legal actions to compel the X X X X  directors to reimburse him the P800,000.00 from his “own pocket” that had paid to X X X X . His excuse was “nagkakagulo na.

11.6.      X X X X  had not commenced an action with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to liquidate X X X X  (“inactive” corporation) to recover from its assets, if any, the amount of P800,000.00 that he had paid X X X X  allegedly out of his own pocket.

11.7.      As to the alleged incident on April 30, 2010 for grave coercion, as per X X X X ,  he met X X X X  at the site (Delia Baia Restaurant) at 8:30 PM to 9:00 PM. X X X X  arrived at 7:00 PM with X X X X  “and friends” (two colonels, a driver, and another unknown person). X X X X , X X X X , and X X X X  talked. After thirty minutes, they moved to separate table, away from the two colonels, by five meters. This time, X X X X  claimed the venue was twice as big as the courtroom (contrary to his past testimony that it was as big as the courtroom).     

11.8.      X X X X  said the two colonels were retired. He did not know if they were carrying guns.


11.9.      X X X X  alleged that X X X X  put his gun on the table to coerce him “to pay another P500,000.00.

11.10. X X X X  claimed after paying X X X X  P300,000.00, he left because he was allegedly afraid.

Note that in a past testimony, X X X X  claimed that he stayed at the venue with the accused and the two colonels until 12:00 Midnight the next day.

If he was afraid, why did he spend five hours up to midnight to be with the accused X X X X  and X X X X ?

11.11.X X X X  admitted that he did not report (or cause to be recorded/blottered) the April 30, 2010 grave coercion incident with, to or in any of the following persons, officers, agencies, or offices on the same date or the next day or at any reasonable date thereafter:

(a)            The two colonels present;
(b)            The security guard of the venue. He did not ask the guard to record the incident his logbook;
(c)             The management of the venue. He did not ask the management to give him a copy of the CCTV video of the incident;
(d)            The local barangay with jurisdiction over the venue;
(e)             The local police station of Xxx  City with jurisdiction over the venue;
(f)              Any law enforcement agency.

11.12.  X X X X  admitted that he reported X X X X  and X X X X  to the NBI only after two months for purposes of the July 8, 2010 entrapment.

11.13.  X X X X  claimed that X X X X  and X X X X  “conspired” with X X X X  to “force” him to pay X X X X  because X X X X  and X X X X  were telling him to pay X X X X  his unpaid loan of P1,000,000.00 to X X X X .

11.14.  Other that his bare allegation, X X X X  offered no proofs to prove the alleged “conspiracy” and “force” exerted upon his person by X X X X  and X X X X  to benefit X X X X  other than the following acts: (a) Going to his home to collect; (b) Calling his phone to collect; (c) “threatening” his family (without offering the concrete details and proofs thereof); (d) texting him daily to collect; (e) and the like.



11.15.  X X X X  claimed that the accused X X X X  and X X X X  as well as X X X X  “banged his gate” but it is not alleged in the formal Information and the documentary bases thereof. The same thing with the following allegations: “following him”, “carrying guns”, “creating commotions in the neighborhood”, “threatening his children” --- all of which are not alleged in the Information and its documentary basis.

11.16.  X X X X  did not report/blotter in his local barangay or in his local police station in xxx City the alleged act of “banging the gate” of his house, “threatening his family”, or “threatening visit” to his house. They do not appear as allegations in the Informations of the instant cases.

11.17.   X X X X  admitted he did not report to the NBI the April 30, 2010 incident and the May 15, 2010 incident which are the subject matters of the instant cases. He claimed the excuse of fear for such inaction.

It took him two months to do so (which led to the NBI entrapment on July 8, 2010). He admitted he reported to the NBI only on June 25 to 28, 2010.

11.18.  X X X X  did not report to the police the April 30, 2010 (when P300,000.00 was paid to X X X X ). He freely paid a P500,000.00 check to X X X X  on May 15, 2010 without seeking police assistance. His excuse was “fear”. Other th this bare allegation, no concrete proofs exist to prove the same.

12.Testimony of X X X X  Given on February 11, 2015. (Continuation of cross examination of X X X X  by Atty. xxx). – The testimony of X X X X  given on February 11, 2015 basically shows that:

12.1.      X X X X , on cross examination, admitted that the Information for grave coercion (Criminal Case No. M-PSY-X X X X ), does not contain an
allegation that X X X X  told him to pay P500,000.00 on May 15, 2010 or else “(his) life would be at stake.

12.2.  As in the case of the grave threat charge that allegedly happened on May 15, 2010 at TRINOMA, Quezon City, covered by Criminal Case No. M-PSY-10-12415-CR (which is clearly outside the jurisdiction of this Court), X X X X  admitted, in re: the case of grave coercion on April 30, 2010 (Criminal Case No. M-PSY-X X X X ), that he did not report the grave coercion incident to

·         the local Barangay,
·         the local Police,
·         the security guard at the restaurant,
·         the management of the restaurant,
·         or any law enforcement agency (NBI, et al)
·         nor did he ask the management of the venue to give him a copy of the CCTV video of the incident, if any,
·        nor did he seek the help of the two colonels who were with them at that time.

12.3.    X X X X  stated that he reported to the NBI after “two weeks”, contrary to his past testimony that he reported the matter only after “two months” (which led to the NBI entrapment on July 8, 2010).

12.4.    X X X X  admitted that the words “Putang ina magbayad ka ng utang mo kung hindi itutumba kita. Madami na akong itinumba sa Laguna at isusunod kita” were not spoken to him by X X X X  on May 15, 2010.

12.5.     But X X X X  admitted he was not present during the  May 15, 2010 incident because he merely P500,000.00 to X X X X  thru X X X X . He alleged that X X X X  said those words via phone callwhich is not alleged in the Information and is in fact contrary to the allegation in the Information that those words were spoken by X X X X  in person frontally in the presence of X X X X .

Note that, in a past testimony, X X X X  stated that the May 15, 2010 incident happened in TRINOMA, which is in Quezon City, outside the jurisdiction of this Court.

12.6.    X X X X  this time alleged that he did not know where X X X X  paid the P500,000.00 check to X X X X , contrary to his past testimony that it happened at TRINOMA, Quezon City. He was not sure whether is happened in Xxx City, contrary to the allegation in the Information.   

12.7.     X X X X  further confused the facts by stating that the threatening words were spoken to him “by telephone….at McDonald’s” on “July 8, 2010 when he (X X X X ) was arrested” by the NBI in an entrapment. (TSN, Feb. 11, 2015, p.16). Then, when asked by the Court, X X X X  changed track and said that X X X X  spoke those words by phone before May 15, 2010 when he (X X X X ) was outside his house and at McDonald’s on May 15, 2010 in the presence of X X X X , X X X X  and his driver. When asked when the grave coercion happened, again X X X X  changed track (Id., p. 18) and said that is happened on July 8, 2010 (NBI entrapment, which is not the subject matter of the instant cases).

12.8.    X X X X  confirmed no grave coercion incident that happened in person on May 15, 2010 (Id.) but only “by phone” before such date. This time he changed track again. When asked about the phone numbers used to send and to receive the threatening words, he said he forgot the numbers (even his own phone number!).    

12.9.    X X X X  did not see a lawyer to issue a cease and desist demand letter to X X X X . He instead went to the INBI. That was on June 25 to 28, 2010.    

12.10.             Note that X X X X  did not present X X X X  to corroborate his testimonies.

12.11.   X X X X  admitted that when X X X X   gave his check of P500,000.00 to X X X X , X X X X   reported to him that his meeting with X X X X  was civil, respectful and non-violent.  The X X X X  report was oral, not written.

12.12. X X X X  admitted the contradiction between his testimony and his Affidavit, dated June 28, 2010, that he filed in the NBI. Paragraph 10 thereof intentionally and misleadingly made it appear that the May 15, 2010 incident happened in person between him and X X X X . He did not mention that it did not happen in person between them because the truth was that he merely sent his P500,000.00 check payment to X X X X  via HIS man X X X X  on May 15, 2010.

12.13.Note that X X X X  denied his business relationship with X X X X . He said X X X X  was not his friend but a friend of X X X X . Yet X X X X  admitted that he entrusted the huge P500,000.00 check to X X X X , who was “not a friend”, for delivery to X X X X . Note, too, that X X X X  did not present X X X X  to corroborate his testimonies.

12.14. X X X X  admitted that the May 15, 2010 incident between him and X X X X  actually did no happen at McDonald’s and that what happened at McDonald’s was the July 8, 2010 NBI entrapment which is not a subject matter in the instant cases.

12.15. X X X X  affirmed (Id., page 25) that the May 15, 2010 incident did not happen in person between him and X X X X  at McDonald’s --- but only “by phone”.

He was not in Xxx City (this Court’s jurisdiction) when he received an alleged allegedly threatening phone call from X X X X  on May 15, 2010.

12.16. X X X X  admitted that the alleged incident on June 14, 2010 at his house when X X X X , X X X X , “John Doe”, and Police Officer xxx was never reported by him to the local Barangay nor
did he file a criminal complaint in the local Police Station or in the Office of the City Prosecutor of xxx City.

He admitted that the NBI did not file a criminal case against X X X X  based on the alleged June 14, 2010 incident (which, incidentally, is not a subject matter of the instant cases).

12.17. Note that no NBI agent testified to corroborate X X X X ’s testimonies.

A.2. TESTIMONY OF SECOND PROSECUTION WITNESS X X X X  GIVEN ON DECEMBER 9, 2015.

13. The testimony of X X X X  given on December 9, 2015 basically shows that:

13.1.      X X X X  stated that sometime in July 2010 (he later stated in was on the 8th day) a meeting was held among himself, X X X X , X X X X , and X X X X . X X X X  arrived late by thirty minutes. The meeting started around 3:00 PM. The venue was McDonald’s, Macapagal Ace., Xxx City.

When X X X X  arrived late at the meeting, he heard them discussing the arrangement for the payment of the loan extended by X X X X .

He stated that X X X X  “THREATENED” X X X X .

It was not X X X X  that issued a threat to X X X X .

When asked to be specific, X X X X  said he “could not recall” if X X X X  actually threatened X X X X  during the meeting  -- an evasive answer.

They were all seated on one table. He sat beside X X X X .   
 
13.2.    X X X X  stated that X X X X  (not X X X X ) threatened X X X X  in a loud voice: “Akala ko matagal ka na sa mining. Saan ang alam mo, sa Zambales lang ang alam mo. Gago ka pala!

X X X X  urged X X X X  not to talk that way to X X X X . He told the group to talk calmly.

13.3.    Then, X X X X  stood up and handed X X X X  a sum of money inside an envelope. X X X X  did not know why X X X X  gave X X X X  the money.  

13.4.    X X X X  stated that no exchange of words took place between X X X X  and X X X X . X X X X  just handed the envelope to X X X X  and then he walked away.

Then, X X X X  told the rest of the group to eat the meals already on the table. The atmosphere was friendly, quiet and non-violent.

When specifically asked if he saw X X X X  pull out a gun, X X X X  evasively stated he “could not remember” – an impossible statement because a crime is not forgotten easily especially if committed in front of a group where one is present.

At any rate, X X X X  did not categorically state that X X X X   pulled out a gun.

X X X X  affirmed that he did not see X X X X  pull out a gun and banged it on the table.

He stated that they had not yet eaten when the NBI agents arrested them. The commotion came from the agents, not from X X X X  or any one from their group, which was then eating peacefully.

X X X X  was handcuffed by the agents. He stayed at the NBI for five hours for an interrogation.

He stated that he had no prior knowledge of the NBI entrapment that day.

Note that the testimony of X X X X  referred only to the July 8, 2010 incident subject matter of Crim. Case No. M-PSY-xxx-CR for alleged grave threat against  X X X X .

13.5.     X X X X  confirmed that he had no knowledge of the incidents that allegedly happened on April 30, 2010 and May 15, 2010 covered by  Crim. Case Nos. M-PSY-X X X X -CR and X X X X -CR.      

13.6.    In closing, he testified that he did not hear X X X X  issue violent threats against X X X X  and/or pull out a gun and banged it on the table during the July 8, 2010 meeting at McDonald’s.

13.7.     He stated that he did not see X X X X  conspire with X X X X  to threaten X X X X  during the said meeting and that he did not see X X X X  on April 30, 2010.

B.    PROSECUTION EXHIBITS.

14. The exhibits for the prosecution consisted of corporate or business records of X X X X  and the self-serving affidavits of X X X X , et al., and other similar documents.

15.  Of the many affiants in the exhibits, only X X X X  and X X X X  testified. The NBI agents did not testify, as earlier stated.

C.    THE PROSECUTION EXHIBITS WERE ADMITTED ONLY AS TO THEIR “EXISTENCE”, NOT AS TO THE PURPOSES FOR WHICH THEY WERE BEING OFFERED.

16.The ORDER, dated November 9, 2016, of the Court admitted in evidence the exhibits of the prosecution only as to the EXISTENCE thereof BUT NOT AS TO THE PURPOSES FOR WHICH THEY WERE BEING OFFERED.

The Court admitted them ONLY AS PART OF THE TESTIMONIES OF THE PROSECUTION WITNESSES (that is, those witnesses who actually testified and were subjected to cross-examination) for being RELEVANT documents as to their EXISTENCE ONLY.

17.   For reference, the accused hereby quotes in full hereinbelow his “COMMENT (To: PROSECUTION’S “FORMAL OFFER OF DOCUMENTARY EXHIBITS”)”, dated November 3, 2016, to stress his assertion of the inadmissibility of the exhibits of the prosecution and the purposes for which they were being offered, to wit:  


x x x.

I.                   X x x.

1.       Xxx.
2.      Xxx
3.      Xxx
4.      Xxx
5.      Xxx
6.      Xxx.

II.                COMMENT PROPER

7.      Re: Exhibit “A”, with submarkings, of the Offer, the accused X X X X  objects to Purposes of the Offer, for the reason that the said statements or allegations of purposes are self-serving, that the same are mere conclusions of law, and that the same are not supported by the evidence on record.

7.1.             To stress: Allegations in a Complaint are not evidence per se. There is no proof of harassment, threat and coercion extant in the said exhibit other than the bare allegation of the private complainant.

8.     Re: Exhibit “B”, with submarkings, of the Offer, the accused X X X X  objects to the Purposes of the Offer, for the reason that the said statements or allegations of purposes are self-serving, that the same are mere conclusions of law, and that the same are not supported by the evidence on record.

8.1.            To stress: Allegations in a Salaysay are not evidence per se. There is no proof of harassment, threat and coercion extant in the said exhibit other than the bare allegation of the private complainant, showing that the accused X X X X  made threatening calls to and poked a gun at the private complainant. 

8.2.           Neither is such an allegation (conclusion of law) a proof of the presence of conspiracy between the two accused X X X X  and X X X X .

8.3.           The exhibit was marked as PROVISIONAL only. There  is no proof that the original was offered to the Court for the record.

9.      Re: Exhibit “C”, with submarkings, of the Offer, the accused X X X X  objects to the Purposes of the Offer, for the reason that the said statements or allegations of purposes are self-serving, that the same are mere conclusions of law, and that the same are not supported by the evidence on record.

9.1.            To stress: Allegations in a Salaysay are not evidence per se.

9.2.           There is no proof of harassment, threat and coercion extant in the said exhibit other than the bare allegation of the private complainant, showing that the accused X X X X  poked a gun at the private complainant or that the two accused X X X X  and X X X X  had conspired.

9.3.           As to the entrapment conducted by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), it should be noted that the Regional Trial Court, Branch xxx, of Xxx City, under Hon. Judge xxx, ACQUITTED the accused X X X X  of illegal possession of firearms filed by the NBI against the accused X X X X , per its AMENDED DECISION, dated January 21, 2016 which in due time shall be presented in evidence by the accused X X X X .

10.  Re: Exhibit “D”, with submarkings, of the Offer, the accused X X X X  objects to the Purpose of the Offer, for the reason that the said statements or allegations of purposes are self-serving, that the same are mere conclusions of law, and that the same are not supported by the evidence on record.

10.1.        To stress: Allegations in a Salaysay are not evidence per se.

10.2.       There is no proof of harassment, threat and coercion extant in the said exhibit other than the bare allegation of the affiant thereof, showing that the accused X X X X  banged loudly on the gate of the home of the private complainant, that the accused X X X X  poked a gun at the private complainant and that the two accused X X X X  and X X X X  had conspired.

10.3.       The affiant IRENE X X X X  did not personally testify before the Court to affirm her subject Affidavit, dated June 28, 2010, and she was not subjected to cross examination by the two defense counsel, thus, the said exhibit is HEARSAY under the Rules of Evidence and violates the constitutional right of confrontation/cross examination of the accused X X X X .


11.    Re: Exhibit “E”, with submarkings, of the Offer, the accused X X X X  objects to the Purposes of the Offer, for the reason that the said statements or allegations of purposes are self-serving, that the same are mere conclusions of law, and that the same are not supported by the evidence on record.

11.1.          To stress: Allegations in a Salaysay are not evidence per se.

11.2.         There is no proof of harassment, threat and coercion extant in the said exhibit other than the bare allegation of the affiant thereof, showing that the accused X X X X  threatened the life of the private complainant and his family, that the private complainant did not freely mortgaged his car to the accused X X X X , and that the accused X X X X  issued the threatening words quoted in the said Salaysay.

11.3.         The exhibit was marked as PROVISIONAL only. There  is no proof that the original was offered to the Court for the record.

12.   Re: Exhibit “F”, with submarkings, of the Offer, the accused X X X X  objects to the Purposes of the Offer, for the reason that the said statements or allegations of purposes are self-serving, that the same are mere conclusions of law, and that the same are not supported by the evidence on record.

12.1.         To stress: Allegations in a Salaysay are not evidence per se.

12.2.        There is no proof of harassment, threat and coercion extant in the said exhibit other than the bare allegation of the affiant thereof, showing that the accused X X X X  made threatening phone calls to the private complainant, that the accused X X X X  poked a gun at the private complainant, and that the two accused X X X X  and X X X X  had conspired.

12.3.        As to the entrapment conducted by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), it should be noted that the Regional Trial Court, Branch X X X X , of Xxx City, under Hon. Judge X X X X , ACQUITTED the accused X X X X  of illegal possession of firearms filed by the NBI against the accused X X X X , per its AMENDED DECISION, dated January 21, 2016 which in due time shall be presented in evidence by the accused X X X X .

12.4.        The affiant xxx did not personally testify before the Court to affirm his subject Affidavit, dated July 8, 2010, and he was not subjected to cross examination by the two defense counsel, thus, the said exhibit is HEARSAY under the Rules of Evidence and violates the constitutional right of confrontation/cross examination of the two accused.

12.5.        The exhibit was marked as PROVISIONAL only. There  is no proof that the original was offered to the Court for the record.

13.   Re: Exhibit “G”, with submarkings, of the Offer, the accused X X X X  objects to the Purposes of the Offer, for the reason that the said statements or allegations of purposes are self-serving, that the same are mere conclusions of law, and that the same are not supported by the evidence on record.

13.1.         To stress: Allegations in a Salaysay are not evidence per se.

13.2.        There is no proof of harassment, threat and coercion extant in the said exhibit other than the bare allegation of the affiant thereof, showing that the accused X X X X  made threatening phone calls to the private complainant, that the accused X X X X  poked a gun at the private complainant, and that the two accused X X X X  and X X X X  had conspired.

13.3.        As to the entrapment conducted by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), it should be noted that the Regional Trial Court, Branch X X X X , of Xxx City, under Hon. Judge xxx, ACQUITTED the accused X X X X  of illegal possession of firearms filed by the NBI against the accused X X X X , per its AMENDED DECISION, dated January 21, 2016 which in due time shall be presented in evidence by the accused X X X X .

13.4.        The three affiants, who are NBI agents, namely, xxx x xxx xxxx xxxx, did not personally testify before the Court to affirm their subject Joint Affidavit, dated July 8, 2010, and they were not subjected to cross examination by the two defense counsel, thus, the said exhibit is HEARSAY under the Rules of Evidence and violates the constitutional right of confrontation/cross examination of the two accused.

14.   Re: Exhibit “H”, with submarkings, of the Offer, the accused X X X X  objects to the Purposes of the Offer, for the reason that the said statements or allegations of purposes are self-serving, that the same are mere conclusions of law, and that the same are not supported by the evidence on record.

14.1.         To stress: Allegations in a Salaysay are not evidence per se.

14.2.        There is no proof of harassment, threat and coercion extant in the said exhibit other than the bare allegation of the affiants thereof or that the accused X X X X  poked a gun  on the private complainant.

14.3.        As to the entrapment conducted by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), it should be noted that the Regional Trial Court, Branch xxx, of Xxx City, under Hon. Judge xxx, ACQUITTED the accused X X X X  of illegal possession of firearms filed by the NBI against the accused X X X X , per its AMENDED DECISION, dated January 21, 2016 which in due time shall be presented in evidence by the accused X X X X .

14.4.        The affiant, who an NBI agent, namely, xxx, did not personally testify before the Court to affirm their subject Joint Affidavit, dated July 8, 2010, and he was not subjected to cross examination by the two defense counsel, thus, the said exhibit is HEARSAY under the Rules of Evidence and violates the constitutional right of confrontation/cross examination of the two accused.

15.    Re: Exhibit “I”, with submarkings, of the Offer, the accused X X X X  objects to the Purposes of the Offer, for the reason that the said statements or allegations of purposes are self-serving, that the same are mere conclusions of law, and that the same are not supported by the evidence on record.

15.1.         To stress: Allegations in the Memorandum of Agreement, dated February 16, 2010, are not evidence per se of threat and coercion. It is merely an evidence of a business transaction. 

15.2.        There is no proof of harassment, threat and coercion extant in the said exhibit other than the bare allegation of the affiant-private complainant. There is no proof that the private complainant was forced to sign the MOA and to mortgage his car or that he was forced, threatened and coerced by the accused X X X X  to pay the debt subject matter thereof. The MOA with a Deed of Chattel Mortgage was a regular business loan transaction duly executed by the parties, including the private complainant.  

16.   Re: Exhibits “J”, “K”, and “L”, with submarkings, of the Offer, which are Cash Vouchers and Bank Deposit Slips, the accused X X X X  objects to the purposes for which they are being offered, for the reason that the said statements or allegations of purposes are self-serving, that the same are mere conclusions of law, that the same are not supported by the evidence on record, and that the purposes stated are irrelevant and immaterial to the allegation of threat and coercion allegedly committed by the accused X X X X .


16.1.         A voucher and a bank deposit slip are not proofs of threat, coercion, harassment, and compulsion. They are merely proofs of payment by the debtor and proofs of receipt of such payment by the creditor.

17.    Re: Exhibits “M”, “O”, and “P”, with submarkings, of the Offer, the accused X X X X  objects to the Purposes of the Offer, for the reason that the said statements or allegations of purposes are self-serving, that the same are mere conclusions of law, that the same are not supported by the evidence on record, and that the alleged threat and coercion are not shown in and by said documents.

17.1.         The author of Exh. “P” (NBI transmittal letter to the Chief Prosecutor of Xxx City), i.e., NBI Dep. Dir. xxx, was not presented in court to authenticate the said document and he was not cross examined. He had no personal knowledge of the crimes charged in the instant cases. He merely relied on the hearsay statement of NBI agent Guevarra as part of his transmittal letter to the Chief Prosecutor of Xxx City.

18.  Re: Exhibit “Q”, with submarkings, of the Offer, the accused X X X X  objects to the Purposes of th Offer, for the reason that the said statements or allegations of purposes are self-serving, that the same are mere conclusions of law, that the same are not supported by the evidence on record, that the stated purposes are irrelevant and immaterial to the nature and contents of the Certificate of Incorporation of the subject Corporation issued by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), and that the attached document thereto, entitled “Extraction/Hustlings/Stockpiling/Hauling and Loading Contract” is not part of the said exhibit and was not issued by the SEC and was not marked as a submarkings of the said exhibit. It was merely  inserted in the Offer for unfair reasons.

19.   Re: Exhibit “R” (Letter of Understanding), with submarkings, of the Offer, the accused X X X X  objects to Purposes of the Offer, for the reason that the said statements or allegations of purposes are self-serving, that the same are mere conclusions of law, that the same are not supported by the evidence on record, and, most of all, that the said exhibit does not prove the crimes of threat and coercion, and that the said exhibit is simply a proof of a regular business transaction.

19.1.         The said exhibit is PROVISIONAL only. There is no proof that the original thereof had been submitted to the court for the record. It is not the best evidence for the purposes for which it is now being offered.

20. Re: Exhibit “S”, with submarkings, of the Offer, the accused X X X X  objects to the Purpose of said Offer, for the reason that the said statements or allegations of purposes do not prove the crimes of threats and coercion. It merely proves probable cause (a duty of the Office of the Prosecutor to establish after a preliminary investigation).

20.1.       Further, the said exhibit is PROVISIONAL only. There is no proof that the original thereof had been submitted to the court for the record. It is not the best evidence for the purposes for which it is now being offered.

21.   Re: Exhibit “U”, ”V”, and “W”, with submarkings, of the Offer, the accused X X X X  objects to the Purposes of the Offer, for the reason that the said statements or allegations of purposes are self-serving, that the same are mere conclusions of law, that the same are not supported by the evidence on record, and that the subject matters of the said documents and contracts (are) extraneous, irrelevant and immaterial to the crimes of threat and coercion charged in the instant cases.

22. Re: Exhibit “X” (judicial affidavit of X X X X ), with submarkings, of the Offer, the accused X X X X  objects to the Purposes of the Offer, for the reason that the said statements or allegations of purposes are self-serving, that the same are mere conclusions of law, that the same are not supported by the evidence on record, that the  same does not prove beyond reasonable doubt the crimes of threat and coercion charged in the instant cases, and that it does not corroborate the testimony of the private complainant as allege din the Purpose Column.

X x x.

III.           ISSUE.

18.The sole issue in these consolidated criminal cases is as follows:

Whether or not the Prosecution has proved beyond reasonable doubt the guilt of the herein accused-movant ENGR. X X X X  for the felonies of GRAVE THREAT and GRAVE COERCION.


IV.            APPLICABLE LAW.

19.The complete provisions of the Revised Penal Code on the various kinds of the felonies of Grave Threats and Grave Coercions are covered by Article 282 to Article 289 thereof. The said provisions are reproduced in full hereinbelow, for reference, to wit:

x x x.

Section Three. - Threats and Coercion.

Article 282. Grave threats. - Any person who shall threaten another with the infliction upon the person, honor or property of the latter or of his family of any wrong amounting to a crime, shall suffer:

1. The penalty next lower in degree than that prescribed by law for the crime be threatened to commit, if the offender shall have made the threat demanding money or imposing any other condition, even though not unlawful, and said offender shall have attained his purpose. If the offender shall not have attained his purpose, the penalty lower by two degrees shall be imposed.

If the threat be made in writing or through a middleman, the penalty shall be imposed in its maximum period.

2. The penalty of arresto mayor and a fine not exceeding 500 pesos, if the threat shall not have been made subject to a condition.

Article 283. Light threats. - Any threat to commit a wrong not constituting a crime, made in the manner expressed in subdivision 1 of the next preceding article, shall be punished by arresto mayor.

Article 284. Bond for good behavior. - In all cases falling within the two next preceding articles, the person making the threats may also be required to give bail not to molest the person threatened, or if he shall fail to give such bail, he shall be sentenced to destierro.

Article 285. Other light threats. - The penalty of arresto menor in its minimum period or a fine not exceeding 200 pesos shall be imposed upon:

1. Any person who, without being included in the provisions of the next preceding article, shall threaten another with a weapon or draw such weapon in a quarrel, unless it be in lawful self-defense.

2. Any person who, in the heat of anger, shall orally threaten another with some harm not constituting a crime, and who by subsequent acts show that he did not persist in the idea involved in his threat, provided that the circumstances of the offense shall not bring it within the provisions of Article 282 of this Code.

3. Any person who shall orally threaten to do another any harm not constituting a felony.

Article 286. Grave coercions. - The penalty of arresto mayor and a fine not exceeding 500 pesos shall be imposed upon any person who, without authority of law, shall, by means of violence, prevent another from doing something not prohibited by law, or compel him to do something against his will, whether it be right or wrong.

If the coercion be committed for the purpose of compelling another to perform any religious act or to prevent him from so doing, the penalty next higher in degree shall be imposed.

Article 287. Light coercions. - Any person who, by means of violence, shall seize anything belonging to his debtor for the purpose of applying the same to the payment of the debt, shall suffer the penalty of arresto mayor in its minimum period and a fine equivalent to the value of the thing, but in no case less than 75 pesos.

Any other coercions or unjust vexations shall be punished by arresto menor or a fine ranging from 5 pesos to 200 pesos, or both.

Article 288. Other similar coercions; (Compulsory purchase of merchandise and payment of wages by means of tokens.) - The penalty of arresto mayor or a fine ranging from 200 to 500 pesos, or both, shall be imposed upon any person, agent or officer, of any association or corporation who shall force or compel, directly or indirectly, or shall knowingly permit any laborer or employee employed by him or by such firm or corporation to be forced or compelled, to purchase merchandise or commodities of any kind.

The same penalties shall be imposed upon any person who shall pay the wages due a laborer or employee employed by him, by means of tokens or objects other than the legal tender currency of the laborer or employee.

Article 289. Formation, maintenance and prohibition of combination of capital or labor through violence or threats. - The penalty of arresto mayor and a fine not exceeding 300 pesos shall be imposed upon any person who, for the purpose of organizing, maintaining or preventing coalitions or capital or labor, strike of laborers or lock-out of employees, shall employ

violence or threats in such a degree as to compel or force the laborers or employers in the free and legal exercise of their industry or work, if the act shall not constitute a more serious offense in accordance with the provisions of this Code.

X x x.

20.            As to the charge of Grave Threat, pursuant to Article 263 of the Penal Code, the crime of Serious Physical Injury is punishable by a penalty ranging from Arresto Mayor to Prision Mayor, depending on the attending circumstances. Relating Article 263 to Article 282 on the felony of Grave Threat, the latter article imposes the penalty “next lower in degree than that prescribed by law for the crime (the offender) threatened to commit.

The felony of Grave Threat is committed by “(threatening) another with the infliction upon the person, honor or property of the latter or of his family of any wrong amounting to a crime”, such as “the threat (of) demanding money or imposing any other condition, even though not unlawful, and said offender shall have attained his purpose”.

21. As to elements of and penalty for the felony of Grave Coercion, Article 286 provides that “the penalty of arresto mayor and a fine not exceeding 500 pesos shall be imposed upon any person who, without authority of law, shall, by means of violence, prevent another from doing something not prohibited by law, or compel him to do something against his will, whether it be right or wrong”.

V.               APPLICABLE JURISPRUDENCE.

22.           The accused X X X X  humbly submits that THE PRESUMPTION OF INNOCENCE HAS NOT BEEN OVERTURNED.

Under the EQUIPOISE RULE, when there is equilibrium in the evidence presented by both sides, the CONSTITUTIONAL PRESUMPTIOM OF INNOCENCE should tilt the balance of the scale in favor of the acquittal of the accused, for, in such a situation, the offense has not been proven beyond reasonable doubt, which is the quantum of evidence required to convict an accused.


Suspicion alone is insufficient, the required quantum of evidence being proof beyond reasonable doubt. [People v. Gargar, 300 SCRA 542 (1998). [See also: En Banc, Justice Mendoza, THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, plaintiff-appellee, vs. FIDEL ABRENICA CUBCUBIN, JR., accused-appellant, G.R. No. 136267.  July 10, 2001].

Only by proof beyond reasonable doubt, which requires moral certainty, may the presumption of innocence be overcome (People vs. Custodio, 47 SCRA 289 [ 1972]).

Moral certainty has been defined as "a certainty that convinces and satisfies the reason and conscience of those who are to act upon it" (People vs. Lavarias, 23 SCRA 1301 [1967]).  Absent the moral certainty that accused-appellant caused the death of the victim, acquittal perforce follows.

23.           The accused X X X X  humbly submits that HIS GUILT HAS NOT BEEN PROVEN PROOF BEYOND REASONABLE DOUBT.

Proof beyond reasonable doubt is needed to overcome the presumption of Innocence (People vs. Reyes, 60 SCRA 126 [1974]).

Accused-appellant’s guilt must be proved beyond reasonable doubt (People vs. Maliwanag, 58 SCRA 323 [ 1974]); otherwise, the Court would be left without any other recourse but to rule for acquittal.

Courts should be guided by the principle that it would be better to set free ten men who might be probably guilty of the crime charged than to convict one innocent man for a crime he did not commit. [En Banc, Melo, People v. Tagudar [G.R. No. 130588. June 8, 2000].


24.           The accused X X X X  humbly invokes the doctrine of COMPASSIONATE JUSTICE. The Accused is a family man, a professional Engineer, an employee, a law-abiding citizen without any prior notorious criminal record or conviction/s. He humbly invokes the sense of COMPASSIONATE JUSTICE of the Court to revisit its Decision, in the interest of compassionate justice.


By analogy, the spirit of the ruling made by the Supreme Court in the case cited below is instructive: PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES vs. CORDENCIO CHATTO alias "DENDEN," SATURNINO DAGAYANON, AND SIX (6) OTHER JOHN DOES, CORDENCIO CHATTO, G.R. No. 102704, March 10, 1993.

The Supreme Court held in that case that “it is a basic rule in our criminal justice system that penal laws should be liberally construed in favor of the offender”.  The foregoing analogous decision of the Supreme Court should be applied to the herein Accused in the interest of compassionate natural justice and equity.

Another analogous case on the doctrine of compassionate justice is:  Pinero etc. vs. NLRC, et. al., GR 149610, August 20, 2004, cited in J. Sison, “A Law Each Day”, Philippine Star, October 14, 2004.

In that case, the Supreme Court held that “equity is justice outside the law, being ethical rather than juridical and belonging to the sphere of morals than of law”; that “it is grounded on the precepts of conscience and not on any sanction of positive law”.

In that case, the worker had no previous derogatory records (like the herein accused X X X X ). The Supreme Court held that “weighed in the scales of justice, conscience and reason tip in favor of granting financial assistance to support him in the twilight of his life after long years of service; that “social and compassionate justice dictate that Lino be awarded financial assistance; and that “indeed, equities of this case should be accorded due weight because labor law determinations are not only secundum rationem (according to reason) but also secundum caritatem (according to charitable heart).

VI.            CONCLUSION.

25.           Based on the summary of the testimonies of the two prosecution witnesses, the crimes charged have not been proven BEYOND REASONABLE DOUBT. Thus, the accused X X X X  is entitled to an ACQUITTAL by way of demurrer to evidence, in the interest of speedy and fair justice.

VII.     X x x.

VIII.     PRAYER.

WHEREFORE, in the interest of justice, it is respectfully prayed that this Demurrer to Evidence be ADMITTED and that the instant consolidated criminal cases for Grave Threats and Grave Coercion against the herein accused X X X X  be DISMISSED for failure of the prosecution to prove his guilt beyond reasonable doubt.

Las Pinas City, December 5, 2016.


LASERNA CUEVA-MERCADER
LAW OFFICES.
Counsel for Accused X X X X  
X x x x

Cc:

OFFICE OF THE CITY PROSECUTOR
Hall of Justice
Xxx City Hall, xxx St.
Xxx City
          (Personal delivery)









[i]  X X X X  is a resident of “No. xxx, xxx Road, xxx City”, per the Information 9 Page 2).

[ii] This should have been the second count considering the chronology of the two events subject matters of these consolidated cases. The numbering of the docket numbers of the two counts of grave coercion was not chronological with respect to the two dates involved.

[iii]  This should have been the first count considering the chronology of the two events subject matters of these consolidated cases. The numbering of the docket numbers of the two counts of grave coercion was not chronological with respect to the two dates involved.