Criminal Procedure Case Digests
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Criminal Procedure Case Digests 1. Bonifacio Vs RTC Makati...................................................................................................................... 2 2.
Foz Vs People ........................................................................................................................................... 3
People Vs Sandiganbayan .................................................................................................................... 5
People Vs Regalario ............................................................................................................................... 6
Tijam Vs Sibonghanoy .......................................................................................................................... 9
Antiporda Vs Garchitorena ........................................................................................................................11
1. Bonifacio Vs RTC Makati (G.R. No. 184800, May 5, 2010) Facts: Private respondent Jessie John P. Gimenez (Gimenez) filed, on behalf of the Yuchengco Family and of the Malayan Insurance Co., Inc. (Malayan), a criminal complaint, before the Makati City Prosecutor’s Office, for thirteen (13) counts of libel under Article 355 in relation to Article 353 of the Revised Penal Code (RPC) against some of the officers of Parents Enabling Parents Coalition, Inc. (PEPCI), some of the trustees of PEPCI and a member of PEPCI (collectively, the accused), and a certain John Doe, the administrator of the website www.pepcoalition.com. Gimenez further alleged that upon accessing the above-stated websites in Makati on various dates from August 25 to October 2, 2005, he “was appalled to read numerous articles [numbering 13], maliciously and recklessly caused to be published by [the accused] containing highly derogatory statements and false accusations, relentlessly attacking the Yuchengco Family, YGC, and particularly, Malayan.” By Resolution of May 5, 2006, finding probable cause to indict the accused, filed thirteen (13) separate Informations charging them with libel. Several of the accused appealed the Makati City Prosecutor’s Resolution by a petition for review to the Secretary of Justice who, reversed the finding of probable cause and accordingly directed the withdrawal of the Informations for libel filed in court. Petitioners, as co-accused, thereupon filed before the public respondent, a Motion to Quash the Information in Criminal Case No. 06-876 on the grounds that it failed to vest jurisdiction on the Makati RTC; the acts complained of in the Information are not punishable by law since internet libel is not covered by Article 353 of the RPC; and the Information is fatally defective for failure to designate the offense charged and the acts or omissions complained of as constituting the offense of libel. The prosecution moved to reconsider the quashal of the Information, insisting that the Information sufficiently conferred jurisdiction on the public respondent, which was strongly opposed by the petitioners. By Order, the public respondent granted the prosecution’s motion for reconsideration and accordingly ordered the public prosecutor to “amend the Information to cure the defect of want of venue.” Petitioners moved to quash the Amended Information but by order, the public respondent found the Amended Information to be sufficient in form. Hence, present petition for Certiorari and Prohibition faulting the public respondent. Issues: (1) Whether or not petitioners violated the rule on hierarchy of courts to thus render the petition dismissible; and (2) whether grave abuse of discretion attended the public respondent’s admission of the Amended Information. Held:
I. The established policy of strict observance of the judicial hierarchy of courts, as a rule, requires that recourse must first be made to the lower-ranked court exercising concurrent jurisdiction with a higher court. The rule is not iron-clad, however, as it admits of certain exceptions. Venue is jurisdictional in criminal actions such that the place where the crime was committed determines not only the venue of the action but constitutes an essential element of jurisdiction. This principle acquires even greater import in libel cases, given that Article 360 of the RPC, as amended by Republic Act (RA) No. 4363, specifically provides for the possible venues for the institution of the criminal and civil aspects of such cases. It becomes clear that the venue of libel cases where the complainant is a private individual is limited to only either of two places, namely: 1) where the complainant actually resides at the time of the commission of the offense; or 2) where the alleged defamatory article was printed and first published. The Amended Information in the present case opted to lay the venue by availing of the second. Thus, it stated that the offending article “was first published and accessed by the private complainant in Makati City.” In other words, it considered the phrase to be equivalent to the requisite allegation of printing and first publication. The same measure cannot be reasonably expected when it pertains to defamatory material appearing on a website on the internet as there would be no way of determining the situs of its printing and first publication. To credit Gimenez’s premise of equating his first access to the defamatory article on petitioners’ website in Makati with “printing and first publication” would spawn the very ills that the amendment to Article 360 of the RPC sought to discourage and prevent. II. For the Court to hold that the Amended Information sufficiently vested jurisdiction in the courts of Makati simply because the defamatory article was accessed therein would open the floodgates to the libel suit being filed in all other locations where the pepcoalition website is likewise accessed or capable of being accessed. Respecting the contention that the venue requirements imposed by Article 360, as amended, are unduly oppressive. Decision: Petition Granted.
2. Foz Vs People (G.R. No. 167764, October 9, 2009) Facts: In an Information filed before the RTC of Iloilo City, petitioners Vicente Foz, Jr., and Danny G. Fajardo, columnist and Editor-Publisher, respectively, of Panay News were charged with the crime of libel. They wrote and publish in the reular issue of the Panay news a certain article maliciously injuring
and exposing one Dr. Edgar Portigo, a company physician of San Miguel Corporation office, SMC, as an incompetent doctor and an opportunist who enriched himself at the expense of the poor. The RTC rendered its Decision finding petitioners guilty as charged. Dissatisfied, petitioners filed an appeal with the CA which rendered its assailed Decision affirming in toto the RTC decision. Hence, this present petition. Issue: Whether or not the RTC of Iloilo City, Branch 23, had jurisdiction over the offense of libel as charged in the Information dated October 17, 1994. Held: Venue in criminal cases is an essential element of jurisdiction. The Court held in Macasaet v. People: “xxx the jurisdiction of a court over the criminal case is determined by the allegations in the complaint or information. And once it is so shown, the court may validly take cognizance of the case. Xxx” Article 360 of the Revised Penal Code, as amended by Republic Act No. 4363, provides the specific rules as to the venue in cases of written defamation: “xxx The criminal action and civil action for damages in cases of written defamations, as provided for in this chapter shall be filed simultaneously or separately with the court of first instance of the province or city where the libelous article is printed and first published or where any of the offended parties actually resides at the time of the commission of the offense: xxx” Applying the foregoing law to this case, since Dr. Portigo is a private individual at the time of the publication of the alleged libelous article, the venue of the libel case may be in the province or city where the libelous article was printed and first published, or in the province where Dr. Portigo actually resided at the time of the commission of the offense. The allegations in the Information that “Panay News, a daily publication with a considerable circulation in the City of Iloilo and throughout the region” only showed that Iloilo was the place where Panay News was in considerable circulation but did not establish that the said publication was printed and first published in Iloilo City. Settled is the rule that jurisdiction of a court over a criminal case is determined by the allegations of the complaint or information, and the offense must have been committed or any one of its essential ingredients took place within the territorial jurisdiction of the court. Considering that the Information failed to allege the venue requirements for a libel case under Article 360, the Court finds that the RTC of Iloilo City had no jurisdiction to hear this case. Thus, its decision convicting petitioners of the crime of libel should be set aside for want of jurisdiction without prejudice to its filing with the court of competent jurisdiction. Decision: Petition Granted.
3. People Vs Sandiganbayan (G.R. No. 167304, August 25, 2009) Facts: Victoria Amante was a member of the Sangguniang Panlungsod of Toledo City, Province of Cebu at the time pertinent to this case. She was able to get hold of a cash advance in the amount of P71,095.00 under a disbursement voucher in order to defray seminar expenses of the Committee on Health and Environmental Protection, which she headed. After almost two years since she obtained the said cash advance, no liquidation was made. As such, Toledo City Auditor Manolo V. Tulibao issued a demand letter to respondent Amante asking the latter to settle her unliquidated cash advance within seventy-two hours from receipt of the same demand letter. The Commission on Audit, submitted an investigation report to the Office of the Deputy Ombudsman for Visayas (OMB-Visayas), with the recommendation that respondent Amante be further investigated to ascertain whether appropriate charges could be filed against her under Presidential Decree (P.D.) No. 1445, otherwise known as The Auditing Code of the Philippines. Thereafter, the OMB-Visayas, issued a Resolution recommending the filing of an Information for Malversation of Public Funds against respondent Amante. The Office of the Special Prosecutor (OSP), upon review of the OMB-Visayas' Resolution, prepared a memorandum finding probable cause to indict respondent Amante. The OSP filed an Information with the Sandiganbayan accusing Victoria Amante of violating Section 89 of P.D. No. 1445. The case was raffled to the Third Division of the Sandiganbayan. Thereafter, Amante filed with the said court a MOTION TO DEFER ARRAIGNMENT AND MOTION FOR REINVESTIGATION and was opposed by The OSP. The Sandiganbayan, in its Resolution dismissed the case against Amante. Hence, the present petition. Issue: Whether or not a member of the Sangguniang Panlungsod under Salary Grade 26 who was charged with violation of The Auditing Code of the Philippines falls within the jurisdiction of the Sandiganbayan. Held: Yes. The applicable law in this case is Section 4 of P.D. No. 1606, as amended by Section 2 of R.A. No. 7975 which took effect on May 16, 1995, which was again amended on February 5, 1997 by R.A. No. 8249. The alleged commission of the offense, as shown in the Information was on or about December 19, 1995 and the filing of the Information was on May 21, 2004. The jurisdiction of a court to try a criminal case is to be determined at the time of the institution of the  action, not at the time of the commission of the offense. The exception contained in R.A. 7975, as well as R.A. 8249, where it expressly provides that to determine the jurisdiction of the Sandiganbayan in cases involving violations of R.A. No. 3019, as amended, R.A. No. 1379, and Chapter II, Section 2, Title VII of the Revised Penal Code is not applicable in the present case as the offense involved herein is a violation of The Auditing Code of the Philippines. Thus, the general rule that jurisdiction of a court to try a criminal case is to be determined at the time of the institution of the action, not at the time of the commission of the offense applies in this
present case. Since the present case was instituted on May 21, 2004, the provisions of R.A. No. 8249 shall govern. The above law is clear as to the composition of the original jurisdiction of the Sandiganbayan. Under Section 4(a), the following offenses are specifically enumerated: violations of R.A. No. 3019, as amended, R.A. No. 1379, and Chapter II, Section 2, Title VII of the Revised Penal Code. In order for the Sandiganbayan to acquire jurisdiction over the said offenses, the latter must be committed by, among others, officials of the executive branch occupying positions of regional director and higher, otherwise classified as Grade 27 and higher, of the Compensation and Position Classification Act of 1989. However, the law is not devoid of exceptions. Those that are classified as Grade 26 and below may still fall within the jurisdiction of the Sandiganbayan provided that they hold the positions thus enumerated by the same law. By simple analogy, applying the provisions of the pertinent law, respondent Amante, being a member of the Sangguniang Panlungsod at the time of the alleged commission of an offense in relation to her office, falls within the original jurisdiction of the Sandiganbayan. Decision: Petition Granted.
4. People Vs Regalario (G.R. No. 101451, March 23, 1993) Facts: Menardo Garcia, herein victim, Glenda Osabal and Romano Padillo, all students of Quezon National High School, were walking in the grounds of the Quezon National High School in Lucena City after dismissal from classes on their way home. The six accused, joined them. Menardo Garcia ran towards Don Feliciano Street, chased by the six accused. About 50 meters away from the corner of Don Feliciano and General Lucban Streets, in front of the former residence of Ex-Mayor Mario L. Tagarao, the six accused overtook Menardo Garcia and, acting in unison, they ganged up on him and boxed him. At this point accused Alex Regalario stabbed Menardo Garcia once with a fan knife locally known as "beinte nueve" and hit him at the left side of his back. Despite being stabbed, the six accused, still acting in unison, continued boxing Menardo Garcia until they saw he was down and could no longer stand up. The six accused then hurriedly left the scene together. Romano Padillo, who was walking side by side with Menardo Garcia witnessed the attack on Menardo Garcia from 10 meters away. He also left, fearing for his safety, and proceeded to the house of Menardo Garcia and reported the incident to his grandmother, Guida Rendon Panganiban. The other accused who pleaded guilty was Alex Regalario, the one who stabbed the victim. During their arraignment on October 28, 1986, appellants, with the exception of appellant Desembrana, entered a plea of not guilty. However, before the prosecution rested its case, appellants Regalario and Pabillar changed their plea to guilty. Appellant Desembrana was apprehended only on October 7, 1987 by elements of the Lucena City police for another offense, and when separately arraigned for the case at bar on November 3, 1987, he pleaded not guilty. Issues: (1) Whether or not the appeal be dismissed out-right for being time-barred.
(2) Whether or not trial court err in accepting the plea of guilty of appellants Regalario and Pabillar when they were re-arraigned but were not apprised clearly and fully of the nature of the offense charged against them (3) Whether or not trial court err in not considering the testimonies of Rolando de Chavez, Augurio Villagracia, Jr., Jose Quiniquito and Alberto Desembrana; (4) Whether or not trial court err in relying on the testimonies of the two witnesses for the prosecution, instead of weighing the evidence adduced during the trial in favor of appellants that there was no conspiracy and the act of boxing and stabbing were independently committed by appellants Regalario and Pabillar; (5) Whether or not trial court err in not considering the age of minority of appellants Regalario and Pabillar at the time of the commission of the crime; and (6) Whether or not the trial court err in not considering the financial standing of appellant's parents in the imposition of the award of indemnity, as well as the funeral and other expenses incidental to the prosecution of the case. Held: I. Section 6, Rule 122 of the Rules of Court very clearly provides: Sec. 6. When appeal to be taken. — An appeal must be taken within fifteen (15) days from promulgation or notice of the judgment or order appealed from. This period for perfecting an appeal shall be interrupted from the time a motion for new trial or reconsideration is filed until notice of the order overruling the motion shall have been served upon the accused or his attorney. As earlier observed, the records of this case show that the judgment of conviction was promulgated in open court on January 17, 1991. Fourteen days thereafter, or on January 31, 1991, appellants filed a motion for reconsideration and a copy of the order denying the same was received by appellants' counsel on February 22, 1991. When appellants filed their notice of appeal on March 4, 1991, ten days had elapsed since the receipt of the notice of the order denying the motion for reconsideration. As hereinbefore noted, the appeal must be perfected within fifteen days from the promulgation of the judgment, but said period is interrupted from the time a motion for reconsideration or new trial is filed and starts to run again from receipt of the notice denying said motion. Accordingly, from receipt of such denial order, appellant has only the remaining period within which to perfect his appeal. In the case at bar, fourteen days had elapsed before the filing of appellants' motion for reconsideration, hence they had only one day from February 22, 1991 to file a notice of appeal. Consequently, the trial court was correct in rejecting appellants' notice of appeal since it was filed beyond the reglementary period. Ordinarily, therefore, the appeal herein could have been dismissed outright for being time-barred. The records, however, do not show that either the public or private prosecutor moved for the dismissal of said appeal or objected to the aforesaid order of the trial court directing the elevation of the records of the case to this Court, obviously for appellate review. It was only after appellants had filed their brief that appellee, in its brief, raised the issue of the belated appeal and, inferentially, the lack of appellate jurisdiction of this Court in this case. However, the principle of estoppel by laches to bar attacks on jurisdiction has been adopted and repeatedly applied by this Court, notably in Tijam, et al. vs. Sibonghanoy, et al., and in several cases which followed thereafter, including criminal cases. In view of the gravity of the offense and the penalty involved, we feel that we should also follow the same judicial path and, in the oft-invoked broader interests of substantial justice, grant to appellants in this case the benefit of judicial review.
II. The trial court did not err in accepting the plea of guilty of appellants Regalario and Pabillar when they were re-arraigned. As reflected in its order dated February 23, 1988, both appellants were assisted by their counsel and it was only after a series of questions to both of them that said court, after being convinced that the plea of guilty was made intelligently and voluntarily, accepted the change of plea, but nevertheless required the prosecution to present its evidence. As correctly argued by the Solicitor General, appellants never questioned the correctness of that order and of the declarations therein, until they filed their brief. Also, during the trial of the case, counsel for both appellants never raised the issue of improvident plea of guilt, as appellants Regalario and Pabillar even presented witnesses to prove their minority during the commission of the crime. III We have carefully reviewed and evaluated the evidence in this case and we agree with the aforequoted findings of the lower court and its conclusion that the culpability of appellants and the existence of a conspiracy among them was sufficiently established by the prosecution. It has been our consistent ruling, founded on reason, logic and experience, that the trial court's assessment of the credibility of the witnesses' testimonies is accorded great respect on appeal. We have repeatedly pointed out and with rational bases, that appellate courts will generally not disturb the factual findings of the trial courts since the latter are in a better position to weigh conflicting testimonies, having heard the witnesses themselves and observed their deportment and manner of testifying, unless it is found that the trial courts have overlooked certain facts of substance and value that, if considered, might affect the result of the case. That doctrine applies in this case as the exceptive circumstance thereto does not obtain here. IV. From the foregoing circumstances, it cannot but be inferred that a conspiratorial undertaking animated the acts of appellants. In a number of cases, the Court has ruled that circumstantial evidence is sufficient to prove conspiracy if it shows a concerted plan, scheme or design to further a common objective. Conspiracy need not be proved by direct evidence but may be inferred from the acts of the accused immediately prior to, during and right after the assault on the victim which indicate their common intention to commit the crime. To prove conspiracy, the prosecution need not establish that all the parties thereto agreed to every detail in the execution of the crime or that they were actually together at all stages of the conspiracy. V. We do not agree with the conclusion reached by the trial court. The mitigating circumstance of minority, being favorable to both appellants, all doubts should be resolved in their favor. Also, it has been ruled that "(i)n regard to the doubt as to whether the accused is over or under 18 years of age, and in the absence of proof that on the day he committed the crime he was 18 years old, he must perforce be considered as still under that age. . . . ." In a more recent case, the mitigating circumstance of minority was appreciated by the Court despite the fact that the only evidence presented by the accused in said case was his own testimony regarding his age while he was on the witness stand narrating what happened two years earlier. VI.
In rendering its judgment of conviction, the trial court also ordered appellants to pay, jointly and severally, the heirs of Menardo Garcia the amount of P23,381.00 as funeral expenses and expenses incident to the prosecution of the case. We accept the ruling of the lower court on this score since such damages were duly proven by the prosecution. However, the death indemnity awarded by the court a quo should be increased to P50,000.00 in accordance with prevailing case law. Decision: Judgment of trial court affirmed with modification.
5. Tijam Vs Sibonghanoy () Facts: In Civil Case No. R-660 of the Court of First Instance of Cebu, which was a suit for collection of a sum of money, a writ of attachment was issued against defendants' properties. The attachment, however, was subsequently discharged under Section 12 of Rule 59 upon the filing by defendants of a bond subscribed by Manila Surety & Fidelity Co., Inc. After trial, judgment was rendered in favor of plaintiffs. The writ of execution against defendants having been returned totally unsatisfied, plaintiffs moved, under Section 17 of Rule 59, for issuance of writ of execution against Manila Surety & Fidelity Co., Inc. to enforce the obligation of the bond. But the motion was, upon the surety's opposition, denied on the ground that there was "no showing that a demand had been made, by the plaintiffs to the bonding company for payment of the amount due under the judgment" (Record on Appeal, p. 60). Hence, plaintiffs made the necessary demand upon the surety for satisfaction of the judgment, and upon the latter's failure to pay the amount due, plaintiffs again filed a motion dated October 31, 1957, for issuance of writ of execution against the surety, with notice of hearing on November 2, 1957. On October 31, 1957, the surety received copy of said motion and notice of hearing. It appears that when the motion was called on November 2, 1957, the surety's counsel asked that he be given time within which to answer the motion, and so an order was issued in open court. Since the surety's counsel failed to file any answer or objection within the period given him, the court, on December 7, 1957, issued an order granting plaintiffs' motion for execution against the surety; and on December 12, 1957, the corresponding writ of execution was issued. On December 24, 1957, the surety filed a motion to quash the writ of execution on the ground that the same was "issued without the requirements of Section 17, Rule 59 of the Rules of Court having been complied with," more specifically, that the same was issued without the required "summary hearing". This motion was denied by order of February 10, 1958. On February 25, 1958, the surety filed a motion for reconsideration of the above-stated order of denial; which motion was likewise denied by order of March 26, 1958.
From the above-stated orders of February 10, 1958 and March 26, 1958 — denying the surety's motion to quash the writ of execution and motion for reconsideration, respectively — the surety has interposed the appeal to the Court of appeals, which was later on denied. Issues: (1) Whether or not the the failure to raise the question of jurisdiction at an earlier stage barred the party from questioning it later. (2) Whether or not the lower court err in not granting its motion to quash the writ of execution because the same was issued without the summary hearing. Held: I. As already stated, the action was commenced in the Court of First Instance of Cebu on July 19, 1948, that is, almost fifteen years before the Surety filed its motion to dismiss on January 12, 1963 raising the question of lack of jurisdiction for the first time. It must be remembered that although the action, originally, was exclusively against the Sibonghanoy spouses the Surety became a quasi-party therein since July 31, 1948 when it filed a counter-bond for the dissolution of the writ of attachment issued by the court of origin. It has been held that a party can not invoke the jurisdiction of a court to sure affirmative relief against his opponent and, after obtaining or failing to obtain such relief, repudiate or question that same jurisdiction (Dean vs. Dean, 136 Or. 694, 86 A.L.R. 79). In the case just cited, by way of explaining the rule, it was further said that the question whether the court had jurisdiction either of the subject-matter of the action or of the parties was not important in such cases because the party is barred from such conduct not because the judgment or order of the court is valid and conclusive as an adjudication, but for the reason that such a practice can not be tolerated — obviously for reasons of public policy. Furthermore, it has also been held that after voluntarily submitting a cause and encountering an adverse decision on the merits, it is too late for the loser to question the jurisdiction or power of the court. II. Coming now to the merits of the appeal: after going over the entire record, We have become persuaded that We can do nothing better than to quote in toto, with approval, the decision rendered by the Court of Appeals. The surety insists that the lower court should have granted its motion to quash the writ of execution because the same was issued without the summary hearing required by Section 17 of Rule 59. Summary hearing is "not intended to be carried on in the formal manner in which ordinary actions are prosecuted" (83 C.J.S. 792). It is, rather, a procedure by which a question is resolved "with dispatch, with the least possible delay, and in preference to ordinary legal and regular judicial proceedings" (Ibid, p. 790). What is essential is that "the defendant is notified or summoned to appear and is given an opportunity to hear what is urged upon him, and to interpose a defense, after which follows an adjudication of the rights of the parties" (Ibid., pp. 793-794); and as to the extent and latitude of the hearing, the same will naturally lie upon the discretion of the court, depending upon the attending circumstances and the nature of the incident up for consideration.
In the case at bar, the surety had been notified of the plaintiffs' motion for execution and of the date when the same would be submitted for consideration. In fact, the surety's counsel was present in court when the motion was called, and it was upon his request that the court a quo gave him a period of four days within motion was called, and it was upon his request that the court a quo gave him a period of four days within which to file an answer. Yet he allowed that period to lapse without filing an answer or objection. The surety cannot now, therefore, complain that it was deprived of its day in court. Decision: Orders appealed from are affirmed.
6. Antiporda Vs Garchitorena (G.R. No. 133289. December 23, 1999) Facts: Accused were charged with the crime of kidnapping one Elmer Ramos in an Information filed with the First Division of the Sandiganbayan. On November 10, 1997, the Court issued an order giving the prosecution represented by Prosecutor Evelyn T. Lucero Agcaoili thirty (30) days within which to submit the amendment to the Information which amendment consist of Accused being a government official. The prosecution on even date complied with the said order and filed an Amended Information, which was admitted by the Sandiganbayan in a resolution. Accused then filed an Urgent Omnibus Motion dated November 16, 1997 praying that a reinvestigation of the case be conducted and the issuance of warrants of arrest be deferred but was denied and such denial approved by the Ombudsman. The accused thereafter filed a Motion for New Preliminary Investigation and to Hold in Abeyance and/or Recall Warrant of Arrest Issued but the same was denied in an order given in open court. Subsequently, the accused filed on March 24, 1998 a Motion to Quash the Amended Information for lack of jurisdiction over the offense charged which was still ignored by the Ombudsman. The Sandiganbayan denied the motion for reconsideration filed by the accused. Hence, this petition. Issues:
or not the Sandiganbayan can subsequently acquire jurisdiction by virtue of the amended information.
(2)Whether or not
the amended information be allowed without conducting anew a preliminary investigation for the graver offense charged therein.
Held: I. The petition is devoid of merit. Jurisdiction is the power with which courts are invested for administering justice, that is, for hearing and deciding cases. In order for the court to have authority to dispose of the case on the merits, it must acquire jurisdiction over the subject matter and the parties.
We answer in the negative. The original Information filed with the Sandiganbayan did not mention that the offense committed by the accused is office-related. It was only after the same was filed that the prosecution belatedly remembered that a jurisdictional fact was omitted therein. However, we hold that the petitioners are estopped from assailing the jurisdiction of the Sandiganbayan for in the supplemental arguments to motion for reconsideration and/or reinvestigation dated June 10, 1997 filed with the same court, it was they who “challenged the jurisdiction of the Regional Trial Court over the case and clearly stated in their Motion for Reconsideration that the said crime is work connected. It is a well-settled rule that a party cannot invoke the jurisdiction of a court to secure affirmative relief against his opponent, and after obtaining or failing to obtain such relief, repudiate or question that same jurisdiction. We therefore hold that the Sandiganbayan has jurisdiction over the case because of estoppel and it was thus vested with the authority to order the amendment of the Information. II. We hold that the reinvestigation is not necessary anymore. A reinvestigation is proper only if the accused’s substantial rights would be impaired. In the case at bar, we do not find that their rights would be unduly prejudiced if the Amended Information is filed without a reinvestigation taking place. The amendments made to the Information merely describe the public positions held by the accused/petitioners and stated where the victim was brought when he was kidnapped. It must here be stressed that a preliminary investigation is essentially inquisitorial, and it is often the only means of discovering the persons who may be reasonably charged with a crime, to enable the prosecutor to prepare his complaint or information. It is not a trial of the case on the merits and has no purpose except that of determining whether a crime has been committed and whether there is probable cause to believe that the accused is guilty thereof, and it does not place the persons accused in jeopardy. It is not the occasion for the full and exhaustive display of the parties’ evidence; it is for the presentation of such evidence only as may engender a well-grounded belief that an offense has been committed and that the accused is probably guilty thereof. The purpose of a preliminary investigation has been achieved already and we see no cogent nor compelling reason why a reinvestigation should still be conducted. Decision: Petition Dismissed.
Miranda Vs Tuliao
(G.R. No. 158763, March 31, 2006) Facts: