Friday, March 18, 2016

Criminal liability in false statements | The Manila Times Online

"x x x.

Making false or untruthful statements in a sworn statement or an affidavit does not, in itself, result in legal implications. While Article 183 of the Revised Penal Code (RPC) imposes a penalty of arresto mayor in its maximum period to prision correccional in its minimum period to a person who makes false testimony in cases not included in Articles 180 to 182 of the said law, as well as perjury in solemn affirmation, the following requisites must first concur in order for criminal liability to attach: (a) That the accused made a statement under oath or executed an affidavit upon a material matter; (b) That the statement or affidavit was made before a competent officer, authorized to receive and administer oath; (c) That in the statement or affidavit, the accused made a willful and deliberate assertion of a falsehood; and (d) That the sworn statement or affidavit containing the falsity is required by law or made for a legal purpose (Monfort III vs. Salvatierra, 517 SCRA 447, G.R. No. 168301, March 5, 2007).

x x x.

“x x x Perjury is the willful and corrupt assertion of a falsehood under oath or affirmation administered by authority of law on a material matter.x x x

x x x Perjury being a felony by dolo, there must be malice on the part of the accused. Willfully means intentionally, with evil intent and legal malice, with consciousness that the alleged perjurious statement is false with the intent that it should be received as a statement of what was true in fact. It is equivalent to “knowingly.” “Deliberately” implies “meditated” as distinguished from “inadvertent acts.” It must appear that the accused knows his statement to be false or is consciously ignorant of its truth.” 

x x x."