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Attorneys of the Philippines Legal News

Welcome to our legal news pages. Here is where we provide updates about what's happening in Philippines legal news, and publish helpful articles and tips for Pinoys researching legal matters.

Blocking Adult Websites As The First Step To Combating Child Pornography

Adults get a visual treat where they can feast their eyes on epic proportions from virtual adult Disneyland often referred to as porn sites. Yes, you will be greeted with an all-you-can eat buffet palatable to your senses. They are the sights to behold to some, but definitely not a form of entertainment for the squeamish. However, sex predators are also using these sites to feed their insatiable appetite. The government has taken the first step to curbing child pornography, as stipulated in Republic Act 9775 or the Anti-Child Pornography Law. Back in 2014, similar efforts were made by the National Telecommunications Commission of the Philippines. In a recent study, it has been revealed that the Philippines spent the most time on porn sites.  At this point, there are experts who are still skeptical about the effort, but the results are still unclear unless you start looking through the lens. 

Anti-Child Pornography Law

Section 4. Unlawful or Prohibited Acts. – It shall be unlawful for any person:

(a) To hire, employ, use, persuade, induce or coerce a child to perform in the creation or production of any form of child pornography;

(b) To produce, direct, manufacture or create any form of child pornography;

(c) To publish offer, transmit, sell, distribute, broadcast, advertise, promote, export or import any form of child pornography;

(d) To possess any form of child pornography with the intent to sell, distribute, publish, or broadcast: Provided. That possession of three (3) or more articles of child pornography of the same form shall be prima facie evidence of the intent to sell, distribute, publish or broadcast;

(e) To knowingly, willfully and intentionally provide a venue for the commission of prohibited acts as, but not limited to, dens, private rooms, cubicles, cinemas, houses or in establishments purporting to be a legitimate business;

(f) For film distributors, theaters and telecommunication companies, by themselves or in cooperation with other entities, to distribute any form of child pornography;

(g) For a parent, legal guardian or person having custody or control of a child to knowingly permit the child to engage, participate or assist in any form of child pornography;

(h) To engage in the luring or grooming of a child;

(i) To engage in pandering of any form of child pornography;

(j) To willfully access any form of child pornography;

(k) To conspire to commit any of the prohibited acts stated in this section. Conspiracy to commit any form of child pornography shall be committed when two (2) or more persons come to an agreement concerning the commission of any of the said prohibited acts and decide to commit it; and

(l) To possess any form of child pornography.

Section 5. Syndicated Child Pornography – The crime of child pornography is deemed committed by a syndicate if carried out by a group of three (3) or more persons conspiring or confederating with one another and shall be punished under Section 15(a) of this Act.

Section 6. Who May File a Complaint. – Complaints on cases of any form of child pornography and other offenses punishable under this Act may be filed by the following:

(a) Offended party;

(b) Parents or guardians;

(c) Ascendant or collateral relative within the third degree of consanguinity;

(d) Officer, social worker or representative of a licensed child-caring institution;

(e) Officer or social worker of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD);

(f) Local social welfare development officer;

(g) Barangay chairman;

(h) Any law enforcement officer;

(i) At least three (3) concerned responsible citizens residing in the place where the violation occurred; or

(j) Any person who has personal knowledge of the circumstances of the commission of any offense under this Act.

Is There A Line That Separates Theft From Robbery?

It is common for most individuals to use theft and robbery interchangeably. After all, they are both considered as crimes against property. However, if you are going to dig deeper into both terms and take law into consideration, you will realize that robbery and theft have their own distinction. 

ROBBERY 

Art. 293. Who are guilty of robbery. — Any person who, with intent to gain, shall take any personal property belonging to another, by means of violence or intimidation of any person, or using force upon anything shall be guilty of robbery. 

Section One. — Robbery with violence or intimidation of persons.

Art. 295. Robbery with violence against or intimidation of persons; Penalties. — Any person guilty of robbery with the use of violence against or intimidation of any person shall suffer:

1. The penalty of reclusion perpetua to death, when by reason or on occasion of the robbery, the crime of homicide shall have been committed.

2. The penalty of reclusion temporal in its medium period to reclusion perpetua when the robbery shall have been accompanied by rape or intentional mutilation, or if by reason or on occasion of such robbery, any of the physical injuries penalized in subdivision 1 of Article 263 shall have been inflicted; Provided, however, that when the robbery accompanied with rape is committed with a use of a deadly weapon or by two or more persons, the penalty shall be reclusion perpetua to death (As amended by PD No. 767).

3. The penalty of reclusion temporal, when by reason or on occasion of the robbery, any of the physical injuries penalized in subdivision 2 of the article mentioned in the next preceding paragraph, shall have been inflicted.

4. The penalty of prision mayor in its maximum period to reclusion temporal in its medium period, if the violence or intimidation employed in the commission of the robbery shall have been carried to a degree clearly unnecessary for the commission of the crime, or when the course of its execution, the offender shall have inflicted upon any person not responsible for its commission any of the physical injuries covered by sub-divisions 3 and 4 of said Article 23.

5. The penalty of prision correccional in its maximum period to prision mayor in its medium period in other cases. (As amended by R. A. 18).

THEFT

Art. 308. Who are liable for theft. — Theft is committed by any person who, with intent to gain but without violence against or intimidation of persons nor force upon things, shall take personal property of another without the latter’s consent.

Theft is likewise committed by:

1. Any person who, having found lost property, shall fail to deliver the same to the local authorities or to its owner;

2. Any person who, after having maliciously damaged the property of another, shall remove or make use of the fruits or object of the damage caused by him; and

3. Any person who shall enter an inclosed estate or a field where trespass is forbidden or which belongs to another and without the consent of its owner, shall hunt or fish upon the same or shall gather cereals, or other forest or farm products.

Affidavit Of Desistance: Its Effect On Pursuing A Criminal Case

The common misconception about the affidavit of desistance is that it can bar someone from pursuing a criminal case. In theory, it serves as a waiver of one's right to pursue civil indemnity. If the complaint is made after the institution of a criminal action, the affidavit cannot justify the complaint's dismissal. 

Two Kinds of Desistance Under Article 6 of the Revised Penal Code

1. Factual Desistance-this type of desistance refers to the actual desistance of the actor, made after the crime's attempted stage. In this case, the actor is still considered criminally liable for the attempt. 

2. Legal Desistance-The desistance, in law, obviates criminal liability unless preparatory or over act has already been committed in themselves constitute a felony other than what the actor intended. 

II. Application of Article 6: 

Only to intentional felonies by positive acts but not to: (i). Felonies by omission (ii) Culpable felonies and (iii) Violations of special laws, unless the special law provides for an attempted or frustrated stage. Examples of the exception are The Dangerous Drugs Law which penalizes an attempt to violate some of its provisions, and The Human Security Act of 2007

III. The attempted stage:

"the accused commences the commission of a felonious act directly by overt acts but does not perform all the acts of execution due to some cause or accident other than his own spontaneous desistance”

 A).(1). The attempt which the Penal Code punishes is that which has a connection to a particular, concrete offense, that which is the beginning of the execution of the offense by overt acts of the perpetrator, leading directly to the its realization and commission (2) The act must not be equivocal but indicates a clear intention to commit a particular and specific felony. Thus the act of a notorious criminal in following a woman can not be the attempted stage of any felony.  

B). Overt or external act is some physical deed or activity, indicating the intention to commit a particular crime, more than a mere planning or preparation, which if carried out to is complete termination following its natural course, without being frustrated by external obstacles nor by the voluntary desistance of the perpetrator, will logically and necessarily ripen into a concrete offense

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C). Examples:

1.  The accused pressed a chemically -soaked cloth on the mouth of the woman to induce her to sleep, while he lay on top of her and pressed his body to her. The act is not the overt act that will logically and necessarily ripen into rape.  They constitute unjust vexation. ( Note: it would be attempted rape if he tried to undress the victim or touch her private parts) ( Balleros vs. People, Feb, 22, 2006)

2. One found inside a house but no article was found on him, is liable for trespass and not for attempted theft or robbery even if he is a notorious robber

3. One found removing the glass window panes or making a hole in the wall is not liable for attempted robbery but for attempted trespass

D) The accused has not yet passed the subjective phase or that phase encompassed from the time an act is executed which begins the commission of the crime until the time of the performance of the last act necessary to produce the crime, but where the accused has still control over his actions and their results. 

E).The accused was not able to continue performing the acts to produce the crime. He was prevented by external forces and not because he himself chose not to continue. Such as when his weap0n was snatched, or his intended victim managed to escape, or he was overpowered or arrested.

F). If the accused voluntarily desisted i.e he himself decided not to continue with his criminal purpose, then he is not liable.

1. Reason: This is an absolutory cause by way of reward to those who, having set one foot on the verge of crimes, heed the call of their conscience and return to the path of righteousness.  .

2. The reason for the desistance is immaterial

3. Exceptions: when the accused is liable despite his desistance

a). when the act performed prior to the desistance already constituted the attempted stage of the intended felony. For example: the accused, with intent to kill, shot at the victim but missed after which he “desisted”, his acts already constituted attempted homicide

b). When the acts performed already gave rise to the intended felony. The decision not to continue is not a legal but factual desistance. As in the case of a thief who returned what he stole.

c). When the acts performed constitute a separate offense. Pointing a gun at another and threatening to kill, and then desisting gives rise to grave threats.

5 Scams To Watch Out For This Holiday Season

December is the season to be vigilant because scammers and crooks are on the prowl for the next victim. Many people fall prey to a vast range of schemes and it is already too late before you realize that the criminal has outsmarted you. This is why it pays to be mindful of these schemes and educating yourself is going to be your best defense.

1. Taxi Scams

A taxi driver whose intention is to take you to your destination will choose the fastest and safest route possible. However, if a taxi driver has another thing in mind, passing through less known streets is going to be a common scenario. These taxi drivers will stop on an isolated street where their accomplices are waiting. It is going to be a ride to hell as the accomplices will hop on the cab and take the passenger's valuables. 

It is important to take note of the cab's plate and the driver's name. Send the information to a loved one. Lock the doors to prevent accomplices from hopping on the cab. 

2. Budol-budol Gang

While this is not a new tactic, many people have been deceived and crooks have already taken the money before the victim can realize that he or she has become a victim of the criminal's schemes. The scenario would usually involve a group of people talking to an unsuspecting victim. Before you know it, you have already submitted to the demands of the group and you just hand over your cash and valuables in exchange for a bag of fake goods or bills. Your parents used to tell you not to talk to strangers. Well guess what, it is still going to be your best defense against Budol-budol gang. 

3. Internet Scams

If traffic makes shopping stressful, online shopping is an option worth-exploring. Although it makes Christmas shopping a breeze, many people have still been exposed to many types of scams. Have you ever placed an order of an item only to find out that it is not what you have hoped for. Have you already paid for the item, but the item never arrived at your doorstep? These are the common internet scams when doing an online shopping. 

It is important to be mindful of the seller you are buying items from. Check reviews and profiles so you will know if the transaction is really legitimate. 

4. Automated Teller Machine Scams

You need to exercise caution when withdrawing your hard-earned money from automated teller machines. This is because there are many ATM schemes that give crooks the opportunity to take your money effortlessly. One of which is cloning your card using an ATM scheming device. They have copied everything and you will wonder why you have no money left in your account. You can keep these scammers at bay if you are watchful of those who have suspicious characters who are circulating the ATM before you make a transaction. Choose the ATM situated inside the bank. ATM scams often take place when machines are located in places that are not well lit. 

5. Salisi Gang

You are in a high-end restaurant or shopping center, so what else could go wrong? Salisi gang attacks when you least expect it. You may be confident of placing your bag in an unoccupied seat beside you, but little do you know that the group is just waiting for a perfect opportunity to strike. These people are dressed in stylish clothes so nobody would suspect them. When a prey is preoccupied or distracted, this is the time they will execute their plan of stealing your valuables. Never leave your things unattended . Place it in an area where you can easily see it. 

List Of Crimes Punishable By Proposed Death Penalty

The aim to enact death penal bill into a law still has a long way to go. People have mixed opinions and reactions regarding death penalty. Reviving death penalty will impose more serious punishment to those who trade, sell, transport and distribute dangerous drugs regardless of purity and quantity. If a person is caught possessing at least 10 grams of any dangerous drugs or 500 grams of marijuana, these criminal offenses will be punishable by death. If foreigners bring in illegal drugs into the country, they too will be executed regardless of the quantity and purity of substance. 

Lawmakers would also like to push through with the inclusion of non-drug related crimes such as murder, kidnapping and rape. For rape cases, the penalty will depend on how and when it happened. Aside from drug trade, corruption is also prevalent especially among government officials. They too are not spared because if found guilty of committing plunder amounting to P50 million or more, the crime will be punished with death. 

Proposed Crimes To Be Punished By Death

1. Treason

2. Qualified Piracy

3. Qualified Bribery

4. Parricide

5. Murder

6. Infanticide

7. Rape (Depends on when and hot it was committed)

8. Kidnapping and Serious Illegal Detention

9. Robbery with violence against or intimidation of persons

10.Destructive Arson

11.Plunder

12.Importation of Dangerous Drugs

13.Sale, Trading, Administration, Distribution of Dangerous Drugs

14.Maintenance of a den, dive or resort where drugs are used

15.Manufacture of Dangerous Drugs

16.Possession of Dangerous Drugs (of certain quantities)

17.Cultivation of Plants Classified as Dangerous Drugs

18.Unlawful Prescription of Dangerous Drugs

19.Criminal Liability for Planting of Evidence

20.Carnapping

 

          Source: House Committee On Justice

Penalties For Threats

Have you ever been threatened by someone that have caused fear or mental disturbance? To some, it is just a form of pressuring someone to give in to the demands of the person imposing threats. Whether light or grave threats, both criminal offenses have penalties under Article 282 and 285.  

A. Grave Threats under Article 282 - the act threatened to be done is a crime e.g. to kill, to burn or destroy property, to box or to inflict injuries 

1. Conditional: the accused makes a demand so that he will not do what he threatened, such as a demand for money or another condition which may not be unlawful. E.g. “I will stone your car if you will fail me”.

2 Unconditional- there is simply a declaration to do wrong or harm amounting to a crime. E.g.: “I am tired of looking at your face. I might as well kill you”

3. But if the threat was made in the heat of anger and the accused did not persist, it is Light Threats. E.g: In a heated quarrel the accused uttered:  “ Uubusin ko kayong magpapamilya” but did not do anything more. If he however gets a weapon and moves towards his opponent, the crime is grave threats.

B. Light Threats which may either be:

1. Where the act to be done does not amount to a crime, but it disturbs another. This may be subject to a condition or not. (Article 283)    Examples:

(a). “I will fail you if you will not be introduce me to your sister”

(bi). “ I will report your absences to your father if you do not let me copy your answers”

(c).  “I will tell your boyfriend about your dating other men”                    

2. Other Light Threats (Article 285)

a). Threatening another with a weapon, or drawing such weapon in a quarrel

b). Orally threatening another with a wrong which may amount to a crime but he accused did not persist in the idea involved in the threat 

III. If there is an intimidation and threat to inflict an injury is coupled with a  demand for money, when is it threats and when is it robbery?

1.     In threats the harm/injury is still to be inflicted in the future (future harm) whereas in robbery the harm is to be inflicted right then and there, or that it is actual and immediate  ( immediate harm)

2.     In threats, the harm maybe committed upon the person or honor of the victim or that to his family, or to his property whereas in robbery the harm is to be inflicted does not include the honor of the victim

3.     In threats the doing of the harm may be communicated through an intermediary where as in robbery the doing of the harm is always communicated directly and personally to the victim

4.     In threat gain is not immediate whereas in robbery the gain is immediate.        

IV. Threats as constituting blackmailing- when the doing of a wrong which does not constitute a crime ( Light threat) is subject to a demand for money or other valuable considerations. Examples: 

1.     “ I will report your cheating to the Dean unless you take charge of my back rentals”

2.      “I will inform your best friend that you are dating her boy friend. However, If you let me have your bracelet, then I will not say anything”.

      NOTE; there are two forms of blackmailing. The second is under the law on libel

V. Threats maybe made in any form: orally or in writing or by deeds and actions; personally or through an intermediary, or via modern facilities of communications, such as by texting or E-mail. The crime is consummated once the threat is made known to the person threatened. 

VI. Threats are absorbed when they are made in connection with another crime, or are used as the means to commit another crime. Thus the threat to kill is absorbed in armed robbery, as the threat to injure is absorbed in rape.

VII. Bond for Good Behavior: this is the amount of money to be deposited by the accused charged with threats to ensure that he shall not molest the person threatened. If he refuses to put up the Bond for Good behavior, he shall be sentenced to destierro. This is separate and different from the bond which the accused is require to put up in order not to be detained pending trial.

Does A Warrant Of Arrest Expire?

A warrant of arrest has to meet the requisites according to the law to be considered valid. It should also be issued by a competent authority, who will also direct the arrest of an individual. The person arrested will be bound to answer for the offense committed. This rule can be found under Rule 112 of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure. 

The arresting officer must execute a warrant of arrest within 10 days from receipt. It should also be noted that the officer is required to make a report to the judge who issued a warrant and state the reason why the accused has not been arrested within 10 days after the expiration. 

When it comes to the validity of the warrant of arrest, it will be considered valid unless recalled or served. 

Section 5. When warrant of arrest may issue. — (a) By the Regional Trial Court. — Within 10 days from the filing of the complaint or information, the judge shall personally evaluate the resolution of the prosecutor and its supporting evidence. He may immediately dismiss the case if the evidence on record clearly fails to establish probable cause. If he finds probable cause, he shall issue a warrant of arrest, or a commitment order if the accused has already been arrested pursuant to a warrant issued by the judge who conducted the preliminary investigation or when the complaint or information was filed pursuant to section 6 of this Rule. In case of doubt on the existence of probable cause, the judge may order the prosecutor to present additional evidence within five days from notice and the issue must be resolved by the court within 30 days from the filing of the complaint or information.

(b) By the Municipal Trial Court. When required pursuant to the second paragraph of section 1 of this Rule, the preliminary investigation of cases falling under the original jurisdiction of the Metropolitan Trial Court, Municipal Trial Court in Cities, Municipal Trial Court, or Municipal Circuit Trial Court may be conducted by the prosecutor. The procedure for the issuance of a warrant of arrest by the judge shall be governed by paragraph (a) of this section. (As amended by A.M. No. 05-8-26-SC.)

Lawful Warrantless Arrest

Even without a warrant of arrest, a peace officer can still arrest the accused if the following conditions are met:

(a) When a person is in hot pursuit;

(b) When, in his presence, the person to be arrested has committed, is actually committing, or is attempting to commit an offense;

(c) When an offense has in fact just been committed, and he has personal knowledge of facts indicating that the person to be arrested has committed it; and

(d) When the person to be arrested is a prisoner who has escaped from a penal establishment or place where he is serving final judgment or temporarily confined while his case is pending, or has escaped while being transferred from one confinement to another.

What Makes A Contract Legally Binding?

When you enter into an agreement, it means there is a meeting of minds which involves fulfilling the obligation to render service or give something. The law considers this agreement as a contract. However, there can be some confusions on the validity of a contract especially if it lacks notarization. Does this mean a contract becomes invalid if it was not notarized? 

It is important to note that a contract can be considered legally binding if it has been made with the consent of contracting parties. The elements of consent, cause and subject must also be present and with that said, contracts can either be verbal or written. 

Art. 1318. There is no contract unless the following requisites concur:

(1) Consent of the contracting parties;

(2) Object certain which is the subject matter of the contract;

(3) Cause of the obligation which is established. 

Notarization converts the contract into a public document hence, the following should appear in a public document under Article 1358 of the Civil Code. 

Art. 1358. The following must appear in a public document:

(1) Acts and contracts which have for their object the creation, transmission, modification or extinguishment of real rights over immovable property; sales of real property or of an interest therein a governed by Articles 1403, No. 2, and 1405;

(2) The cession, repudiation or renunciation of hereditary rights or of those of the conjugal partnership of gains;

(3) The power to administer property, or any other power which has for its object an act appearing or which should appear in a public document, or should prejudice a third person;

(4) The cession of actions or rights proceeding from an act appearing in a public document.

All other contracts where the amount involved exceeds five hundred pesos must appear in writing, even a private one. But sales of goods, chattels or things in action are governed by Articles, 1403, No. 2 and 1405. 

Even if it is a private contract, the contracts where the amount involved is more than five hundred pesos must be written with the exception of chattels, sales of goods and other things in action as they are governed by Articles 1403, no. 2 and 1405. A contract need not be notarized if it only involves a movable property. This means that a contract is still enforceable and valid if it has been proven that the requirement is indispensable and absolute. 

Why Should You Not Drink And Drive

Have you ever basked in the solace of beer or dangerous drugs? Have you been on a downward spiral toward depression that you consider these substances as a quick but temporary fix? Is having fun incomplete without drowning yourself in these substances? When you are under the influence of alcohol or dangerous drugs, you do things you do not normally do as inhibitions are unleashed. When you no longer know where to draw the line, it seems so easy to flirt with danger and even go steady with death. Intoxication can breed danger or pose a threat to your life and to other people. Drinking should not be intertwined with driving. Here's why:

Implementing Rules And Regulations

"REPUBLIC ACT NO. 10586
AN ACT PENALIZING PERSONS DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF ALCOHOL, DANGEROUS DRUGS, AND SIMILAR SUBSTANCES, AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES
SEC. 4. Driver’s Education. – Every applicant for a motor vehicle driver’s license shall complete a course of instruction that provides information on safe driving including, but not limited to, the effects of the consumption of alcoholic beverages on the ability of a person to operate a motor vehicle, the hazards of driving under the influence of alcohol, dangerous drugs and/or other similar substances, and the penalties attached for violation thereof.

For professional drivers, every applicant for a driver’s license or those applying for renewal thereof shall undergo the driver’s education herein stated.

The driver’s license written examination shall include questions concerning the effects of alcohol and drug intoxication on the ability of a person to operate a motor vehicle and the legal and pecuniary consequences resulting from violation of the provisions of this Act.

SEC. 5. Punishable Act. – It shall be unlawful for any person to drive a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, dangerous drugs and/or other similar substances.

SEC. 6. Conduct of Field Sobriety, Chemical and Confirmatory Tests. – A law enforcement officer who has probable cause to believe that a person is driving under the influence of alcohol, dangerous drugs and/or other similar substances by apparent indications and manifestations, including overspeeding, weaving, lane straddling, sudden stops, swerving, poor coordination or the evident smell of alcohol in a person’s breath or signs of use of dangerous drugs and other similar substances, shall conduct field sobriety tests.

If the driver fails in the sobriety tests, it shall be the duty of the law enforcement officer to implement the mandatory determination of the driver’s blood alcohol concentration level through the use of a breath analyzer or similar measuring instrument.

If the law enforcement officer has probable cause to believe that a person is driving under the influence of dangerous drugs and/or other similar substances, it shall be the duty of the law enforcement officer to bring the driver to the nearest police station to be subjected to a drug screening test and, if necessary, a drug confirmatory test as mandated under Republic Act No. 9165.

Law enforcement officers and deputized local traffic enforcement officers shall be responsible in implementing this section.

SEC. 7. Mandatory Alcohol and Chemical Testing of Drivers Involved in Motor Vehicular Accidents. – A driver of a motor vehicle involved in a vehicular accident resulting in the loss of human life or physical injuries shall be subjected to chemical tests, including a drug screening test and, if necessary, a drug confirmatory test as mandated under Republic Act No. 9165, to determine the presence and/or concentration of alcohol, dangerous drugs and/or similar substances in the bloodstream or body.

SEC. 8. Refusal to Subject Oneself to Mandatory Tests. – A driver of a motor vehicle who refuses to undergo the mandatory field sobriety and drug tests under Sections 6, 7 and 15 of this Act shall be penalized by the confiscation and automatic revocation of his or her driver’s license, in addition to other penalties provided herein and/or other pertinent laws."

What Is Extortion?

Have you ever encountered a person who demands you to give up money or other property by intimidation, threat of violence or damage to your reputation? Extortion involves force and even if the victim has given his or her consent, that consent has been obtained illegally. Extortion comes is many forms. A classic example would be the protection scheme. This involves demanding store owners to pay a certain amount for protection to prevent the extortionist from creating any damage to the store owner's property.

The laglag bala scheme is also an example of extortion. Some people who were caught carrying bullets were asked to pay the airport authorities in exchange of their freedom. Some laglag bala victims chose to pay to spare themselves from the long investigation process.  In extortion, there is a threat of violence involved and it leaves victims with no other choice but to comply to avoid any inconvenience and disturbance.

Section 9. Article 294 of the same Code is hereby amended to read as follows:


Art. 294. Robbery with violence against or intimidation of persons 

Penalties. Any person guilty of robbery with the use of violence against or intimidation of any person shall suffer:

1. The penalty of reclusion perpetua to death, when by reason or on occasion of the robbery, the crime of homicide shall have been committed, or when the robbery shall have been accompanied by rape or intentional mutilation or arson.

2. The penalty of reclusion temporal in its medium period to reclusion perpetua, when or if by reason or on occasion of such robbery, any of the physical injuries penalized in subdivision I of Article 263 shall have been inflicted.

3. The penalty of reclusion temporal, when by reason or on occasion of the robbery, any of the physical injuries penalized in subdivision 2 of the article mentioned in the next preceding paragraph, shall have been inflicted.

4. The penalty of prision mayor in its maximum period to reclusion temporal in its medium period, if the violence or intimidation employed in the commission of the robbery shall have been carried to a degree clearly unnecessary for the commission of the crime, or when in the course of its execution, the offender shall have inflicted upon any person not responsible for its commission any of the physical injuries covered by subdivisions 3 and 4 of said Article 263.

5. The penalty of prision correccional in its maximum period to prision mayor in its medium period in other cases.

Anyone can be a victim of extortion and if you feel that your rights have been violated, you need to seek help from an attorney.

Murder Versus Homicide: How Can You Tell The Difference

One of the most controversial cases that is currently undergoing further investigation is the case of two arrested suspects for illegal drug possession who were killed by Pasay City cops. The suspects for the possession of illegal drugs were Renato Bertes and Jaypee Bertes, residents of Ignacio Street in Pasay City. According to the investigation, only one handcuff was used for restraining two drug suspects. Things went out of hand upon their return to the detention cell. When PO2 Alipio Balo was removing the handcuff, Renato attempted to grab the gun. Balo was able to take control of the gun and shot Renato while PO1 Michael Tomas shot Jaypee.

Murder charges were filed against two policemen involved in the killing of the drug suspects. Although the investigation held on August 22, covered other cases of extra judicial killing, the case of the two policemen were the first to undergo scrutiny. Senior Supt. Nolasco Bathan was in the hot seat as Senator Leila de Lima, chair of justice and human rights committee asked for the basis of filing the murder case. Bathan was not able to give a clear answer, leading De Lima to probe more. Bathan said that the murder charges were filed because someone got killed. De Lima wanted to know why file murder charges instead of homicide. What is the difference between homicide and murder?

Premeditation

Premeditation refers to the action of planning something beforehand. This means that the killer has already made a decision to kill or thought about killing another person. This may require meticulous planning to make the killing appear to be an accident.

"Art. 248. Murder. — Any person who, not falling within the provisions of Article 246 shall kill another, shall be guilty of murder and shall be punished by reclusion temporal in its maximum period to death, if committed with any of the following attendant circumstances:

1. With treachery, taking advantage of superior strength, with the aid of armed men, or employing means to weaken the defense or of means or persons to insure or afford impunity.

2. In consideration of a price, reward, or promise.

3. By means of inundation, fire, poison, explosion, shipwreck, stranding of a vessel, derailment or assault upon a street car or locomotive, fall of an airship, by means of motor vehicles, or with the use of any other means involving great waste and ruin.

4. On occasion of any of the calamities enumerated in the preceding paragraph, or of an earthquake, eruption of a volcano, destructive cyclone, epidemic or other public calamity.

5. With evident premeditation.

6. With cruelty, by deliberately and inhumanly augmenting the suffering of the victim, or outraging or scoffing at his person or corpse.

Art. 249. Homicide. — Any person who, not falling within the provisions of Article 246, shall kill another without the attendance of any of the circumstances enumerated in the next preceding article, shall be deemed guilty of homicide and be punished by reclusion temporal."

Abused Women And Their Children: Not Waving But Drowning

Many women cry(or even die) in silence and the bruises all over their body are tell tale signs of domestic abuse. According to the Center for Women's Resources (CWR), from year 2010 and 2014, the violations of the Anti-Violence Against Women and Children Act increased by 200 percent.  In a country where male dominance is still considered part of the culture, some women remain submissive despite the pain they have to endure. Victims of domestic violence continue to be in chains because of giving importance to the sanctity of marriage. Women who are abused also stay for the sake of their children, but the trauma continues as children would sometimes witness the physical and emotional torture being inflicted upon the mother. In fact, children are not spared from violence because their frail body is also used as punching bag when the father has temper tantrums. Unfortunately, violence is not limited to physical abuse. So, what are considered acts of violence against women and their women.

SEC. 5. Acts of violence against women and their children under R.A. No. 9262.—Violence against women and their children is committed through any of the following acts:

(a)            Causing, threatening or attempting to cause physical harm to the woman or her child;

(b)            Placing the woman or her child in fear of imminent physical harm;

(c)            Attempting to compel or compelling the woman or her child to engage in conduct which the woman or her child has the right to desist from or to desist from conduct which the woman or her child has the right to engage in, or attempting to restrict .or restricting the woman’s or her child’s freedom of movement or conduct by force or threat of force, physical or other harm or threat of physical on other harm, or intimidation directed against the woman or her child.

This shall include, but is not limited to, the following acts committed with the purpose or effect of controlling or restricting the movement or conduct of the woman or her child:

(1)     Threatening to deprive or actually depriving the woman or her child of custody or access to her/his family;

(2)     Depriving or threatening to deprive the woman or her children of financial support legally due her or her family, or deliberately providing the woman’s children insufficient financial support;

(3)     Depriving or threatening to deprive the woman or her child of a legal right; and

(4)     Preventing the woman from engaging in any legitimate profession, occupation, business or activity except in cases where the spouse or partner on valid, serious  and moral grounds, or controlling the victim’s own money or property, or solely controlling the conjugal or common money or property;

(d)            Inflicting or threatening to inflict physical ham on oneself for the purpose of controlling her actions or decisions;

(e)            Causing or attempting to cause the woman or her child to engage in any sexual activity which does not constitute rape, by force or threat of force, physical harm, or through intimidation directed against the woman   or her child or her/his immediate family;

(f)             Engaging in purposeful, knowing, or reckless conduct, personally or through another, that alarms or causes substantial emotional or psychological distress to the woman or her child.

This shall include, but is not limited to, the following acts:

(1)     Stalking or following the woman or her child in public or private places;

(2)     Peering in the window or lingering outside the residence of the woman or her child;

(3)     Entering or remaining in the dwelling or on the property of the woman or her child against her/his will;

(4)     Destroying the property and personal belongings or inflicting harm to animals or pets of the woman or child; and

(5)     Engaging in any form of harassment or violence; or

(g)            Causing mental or emotional anguish, public ridicule or humiliation to the woman or her child, including, but not limited to, repeated verbal and emotional abuse, and denial of financial support or custody of a minor child or denial of access to the woman’s child.

How Would You Know You Are Committing Cyber-Bullying Via Social Media?

It seems so easy to pick on someone via social media because of the freedom to remain anonymous. Cyber-bullying has been plaguing people because of the damage it causes that are sometimes beyond repair. There are quite a few examples of cyber-bullying taken to extremes. Just recently, A woman was doing the rounds on the Internet because of ranting about a man whom he perceived to be "ungentleman" for failing to offer a seat during an MRT ride. Her comments went a little too personal that it earned the ire of netizens. Cyber-bullying did not end with just an exchange of derogatory remarks because the ones who criticized the woman were also doing the same thing.

What acts considered as cyber-bullying?

"a) Repeatedly sending offensive, rude and insulting message;

b) Distributing derogatory information about the victim;

c) Posting or sending offensive photos of the victim, whether these are digitally altered or not, or were taken with or without consent, with the intention to humiliate and embarrass the victim;

d) Breaking into an email, social networking or any electronic account and using the victim’s virtual identity to send, upload or distribute embarrassing materials to or about others;

e) Sharing the victim’s personal information or any embarrassing information, or tricking the victim into revealing personal or embarrassing information and sharing it to others; and

f) Repeatedly sending messages that include threats of harm or engaging in online activities that cause fear on the victim’s safety."

What to do about cyber-bullying?

1. Take a screenshot of the hateful messages and save it.
2. Be sure to inform your loved ones about the attacks you receive.
3. Inform the authorities about the attacks.
4. If the bully uses social accounts, report the account being used.
5. Change your mobile number if these are also being used for the attacks.
6. Deactivate your account and try to avoid going online for a time being. Online aggression from the bully can be monitored by your friends or family.
7. Seek professional counseling.
8. Seek police help.

Things may not always go your way, but this does not mean that you should use social media as an avenue for expressions. Be sure to think twice before posting anything to social media because not everyone understands. Remember that photos speak volumes and anyone can be a storyteller. Everyone can have a bad day, but instead of using Facebook and other social accounts to vent out, talk to your friends and loved ones. It saves you from bullying and being bullied plus you get advice from real people.

Couple Caught Selling Illegal Drugs In Social Media

In today's digital age, people find online business transactions convenient and hassle-free as order can be placed in a few clicks. While mouse potatoes reap the benefits of online transactions, drug pushers are also taking advantage of the proliferation of technology. On July 17, Bonn Antiquera and his girlfriend Odessa Caneda were nabbed for selling marijuana through online transaction. The couple used social media to transact with prospective customers.  According to Darroca, they get their supply from Cebu City and shipped through a roll-on roll-off vessel. An estimated value of P162,000 or ten kilos of marijuana were recovered inside the couple's vehicle. Due to the decreasing supply of shabu (methamphetamine hydrochloride), some drug dealers have resorted to selling marijuana.The couple violated RA No. 9165 or the Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002.

"Section 4. Importation of Dangerous Drugs and/or Controlled Precursors and Essential Chemicals.- .The penalty of life imprisonment to death and a ranging from Five hundred thousand pesos (P500,000.00) to Ten million pesos (P10,000,000.00) shall be imposed upon any person, who, unless authorized by law, shall import or bring into the Philippines any dangerous drug, regardless of the quantity and purity involved, including any and all species of opium poppy or any part thereof or substances derived therefrom even for floral, decorative and culinary purposes.

The penalty of imprisonment ranging from twelve (12) years and one (1) day to twenty (20) years and a fine ranging from One hundred thousand pesos (P100,000.00) to Five hundred thousand pesos (P500,000.00) shall be imposed upon any person, who, unless authorized by law, shall import any controlled precursor and essential chemical.

The maximum penalty provided for under this Section shall be imposed upon any person, who, unless authorized under this Act, shall import or bring into the Philippines any dangerous drug and/or controlled precursor and essential chemical through the use of a diplomatic passport, diplomatic facilities or any other means involving his/her official status intended to facilitate the unlawful entry of the same. In addition, the diplomatic passport shall be confiscated and canceled.

The maximum penalty provided for under this Section shall be imposed upon any person, who organizes, manages or acts as a "financier" of any of the illegal activities prescribed in this Section.

The penalty of twelve (12) years and one (1) day to twenty (20) years of imprisonment and a fine ranging from One hundred thousand pesos (P100,000.00) to Five hundred thousand pesos (P500,000.00) shall be imposed upon any person, who acts as a "protector/coddler" of any violator of the provisions under this Section.

Section 5. Sale, Trading, Administration, Dispensation, Delivery, Distribution and Transportation of Dangerous Drugs and/or Controlled Precursors and Essential Chemicals. - The penalty of life imprisonment to death and a fine ranging from Five hundred thousand pesos (P500,000.00) to Ten million pesos (P10,000,000.00) shall be imposed upon any person, who, unless authorized by law, shall sell, trade, administer, dispense, deliver, give away to another, distribute dispatch in transit or transport any dangerous drug, including any and all species of opium poppy regardless of the quantity and purity involved, or shall act as a broker in any of such transactions.

The penalty of imprisonment ranging from twelve (12) years and one (1) day to twenty (20) years and a fine ranging from One hundred thousand pesos (P100,000.00) to Five hundred thousand pesos (P500,000.00) shall be imposed upon any person, who, unless authorized by law, shall sell, trade, administer, dispense, deliver, give away to another, distribute, dispatch in transit or transport any controlled precursor and essential chemical, or shall act as a broker in such transactions.

If the sale, trading, administration, dispensation, delivery, distribution or transportation of any dangerous drug and/or controlled precursor and essential chemical transpires within one hundred (100) meters from the school, the maximum penalty shall be imposed in every case.

For drug pushers who use minors or mentally incapacitated individuals as runners, couriers and messengers, or in any other capacity directly connected to the dangerous drugs and/or controlled precursors and essential chemical trade, the maximum penalty shall be imposed in every case.

If the victim of the offense is a minor or a mentally incapacitated individual, or should a dangerous drug and/or a controlled precursor and essential chemical involved in any offense herein provided be the proximate cause of death of a victim thereof, the maximum penalty provided for under this Section shall be imposed.

The maximum penalty provided for under this Section shall be imposed upon any person who organizes, manages or acts as a "financier" of any of the illegal activities prescribed in this Section.

The penalty of twelve (12) years and one (1) day to twenty (20) years of imprisonment and a fine ranging from One hundred thousand pesos (P100,000.00) to Five hundred thousand pesos (P500,000.00) shall be imposed upon any person, who acts as a "protector/coddler" of any violator of the provisions under this Section."

What Is Human Security Act of 2007?

The Philippines is full of potentials and promises that continue to attract locals and tourists alike. You need not go to far places just to have a relaxing break as the country's sights, sounds and tastes will surely captivate you. Some tourists who used to consider the country as a holiday destination, have now considered it as a perfect base for retirement. Unfortunately, the beauty of the Philippines has been marred by terrorism. The Philippines has been infested by Abu Sayyaf, the most violent jihadist group in the country. They have committed numerous crimes against security and the most recent was the capture of Malaysian and Indonesian workers, a Filipina and Western tourists, two of whom have already been beheaded when the Canadian government refused to pay the ransom the group demanded. The government has zero tolerance on this barbaric act hence, working hard to put an end to terrorism in the country. The Human Security Act of 2007 aims to protect people's lives, liberty and property against any act of terrorism.

REPUBLIC ACT NO. 9372

"AN ACT TO SECURE THE STATE AND PROTECT OUR PEOPLE FROM TERRORISM

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the Philippines in Congress assembled:

SECTION 1. Short Title. This Act shall henceforth be known as the Human Security Act of 2007.

SEC. 2. Declaration of Policy. It is declared a policy of the State to protect life, liberty, and property from acts of terrorism, to condemn terrorism as inimical and dangerous to the national security of the country and to the welfare of the people, and to make terrorism a crime against the Filipino people, against humanity, and against the law of nations.

In the implementation of the policy stated above, the State shall uphold the basic rights and fundamental liberties of the people as enshrined in the constitution.

The State recognizes that the fight against terrorism requires a comprehensive approach, comprising political, economic, diplomatic, military, and legal means duly taking into account the root causes of terrorism without acknowledging these as justifications for terrorist and/or criminal activities. Such measures shall include conflict management and post-conflict peace-building, addressing the roots of conflict by building state capacity and promoting equitable economic development.

Nothing in this Act shall be interpreted as a curtailment, restriction or diminution of constitutionally recognized powers of the executive branch of the government. It is to be understood, however, that the exercise of the constitutionally recognized powers of the executive department of the government shall not prejudice respect for human rights which shall be absolute and protected at all times.

SEC. 3. Terrorism. Any person who commits an act punishable under any of the following provisions of the Revised Penal Code:

1. Article 122 (Piracy in General and Mutiny in the High Seas or in the Philippine Waters);
2. Article 134 (Rebellion or Insurrection);
3. Article 134-a (Coup d Etat), including acts committed by private persons;
4. Article 248 (Murder);
5. Article 267 (Kidnapping and Serious Illegal Detention);
6. Article 324 (Crimes Involving Destruction,

or under

1. Presidential Decree No. 1613 (The Law on Arson);
2. Republic Act No. 6969 (Toxic Substances and Hazardous and Nuclear Waste Control Act of 1990);
3. Republic Act No. 5207, (Atomic Energy Regulatory and Liability Act of 1968);
4. Republic Act No. 6235 (Anti-Hijacking Law);
5. Presidential Decree No. 532 (Anti-piracy and Anti-highway Robbery Law of 1974); and,
6. Presidential Decree No. 1866, as amended (Decree Codifying the Laws on Illegal and Unlawful Possession, Manufacture, Dealing in, Acquisition or Disposition of Firearms, Ammunitions or Explosives)

thereby sowing and creating a condition of widespread and extraordinary fear and panic among the populace, in order to coerce the government to give in to an unlawful demand shall be guilty of the crime of terrorism and shall suffer the penalty of forty (40) years of imprisonment, without the benefit of parole as provided for under Act No. 4103, otherwise known as the Indeterminate Sentence Law, as amended.

SEC. 4. Conspiracy to Commit Terrorism. Persons who conspire to commit the crime of terrorism shall suffer the penalty of forty (40) years of imprisonment.

There is conspiracy when two or more persons come to an agreement concerning the commission of the crime of terrorism as defined in Section 3 hereof and decide to commit the same."

Forgery: A Serious and Punishable Offense

An individual commits a crime of forgery if the signature in the negotiable instrument is forged without the consent of the authorized person. Many people have fallen victim to fraudulent transactions despite precautionary measures. Although most people rely heavily on a person’s ability to produce trustworthy documents, individuals, businesses and even political entities are still not spared from the crime of forgery.

Forgery is committed when:

•    a person signs in another’s name with the intent to defraud;
•    a person alters the name, amount or payee’s name with intent to defraud.

Although a crime of forgery is committed, only the forged signature is considered invalid. The instrument and the genuine signatures are still deemed valid. When it comes to payment under a forged instrument, the person whose signature is forged will not be held liable for the fraudulent transaction except for those who are negligent or those who impliedly ratified the forgery. An example of negligent would be leaving your checkbook with an executive assistant. While the assistant have forged your signature, the mere fact that there was neglect on your part will still make you liable if transactions are made through your forged signature.

“Art. 169. How forgery is committed. — The forgery referred to in this section may be committed by any of the following means:

1. By giving to a treasury or bank note or any instrument, payable to bearer or order mentioned therein, the appearance of a true genuine document.
2. By erasing, substituting, counterfeiting or altering by any means the figures, letters, words or signs contained therein.

Section Four. — Falsification of legislative, public, commercial, and privatedocuments, and wireless, telegraph, and telephone message.

Art. 170. Falsification of legislative documents. — The penalty of prision correccional in its maximum period and a fine not exceeding P6,000 pesos shall be imposed upon any person who, without proper authority therefor alters any bill, resolution, or ordinance enacted or approved or pending approval by either House of the Legislature or any provincial board or municipal council.

Art. 171. Falsification by public officer, employee or notary or ecclesiastic minister. — The penalty of prision mayor and a fine not to exceed P5,000 pesos shall be imposed upon any public officer, employee, or notary who, taking advantage of his official position, shall falsify a document by committing any of the following acts:

1. Counterfeiting or imitating any handwriting, signature or rubric;
2. Causing it to appear that persons have participated in any act or proceeding when they did not in fact so participate;
3. Attributing to persons who have participated in an act or proceeding statements other than those in fact made by them;
4. Making untruthful statements in a narration of facts;
5. Altering true dates;
6. Making any alteration or intercalation in a genuine document which changes its meaning;
7. Issuing in an authenticated form a document purporting to be a copy of an original document when no such original exists, or including in such a copy a statement contrary to, or different from, that of the genuine original; or
8. Intercalating any instrument or note relative to the issuance thereof in a protocol, registry, or official book.

The same penalty shall be imposed upon any ecclesiastical minister who shall commit any of the offenses enumerated in the preceding paragraphs of this article, with respect to any record or document of such character that its falsification may affect the civil status of persons. “

Threats And Coercion: Crimes Against Security

There are instances when we demand for money or another condition, but when these demands are not fulfilled, there is a tendency for the person who made a demand to pose a threat out of frustration. To some, it may just be a way of reminding the person to fulfil the demands, but if such threats have already disturbed the peace of mind of an individual, even if the person who made the demand intended no harm, this can still be considered as a crime against security. Threats and coercion have a broad spectrum, but one thing is for sure, a declaration to harm a person in the throes of anger can still be considered as a form of threat.  

“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.”

When Does An Individual Commit The Crime Of Acts Of Lasciviousness?

Living in a conservative country such as the Philippines feels as though you are walking on eggshells as you need to be very careful with your actions. For instance, making a physical contact would mean an innocuous gesture to some, but a serious offense to others. It may seem very subjective, but the crime of acts of lasciviousness is already a serious mater and this is when touching means something. However, many choose to keep silent because in a country where sex is a taboo topic, some victims are the ones being blamed for the crime committed. Like rape, acts of lasciviousness can be very traumatic to the hapless victim and it is not just about sex but taking advantage of the victim’s weakness. So what exactly are acts of lasciviousness?

As defined in the Republic Act No. 7610, “Lascivious conduct” means the intentional touching, either directly or through clothing, of the genitalia, anus, groin, breast, inner thigh, or buttocks, or the introduction of any object into the genitalia, anus or mouth, of any person, whether of the same or opposite sex, with an intent to abuse, humiliate, harass, degrade, or arouse or gratify the sexual desire of any person, bestiality, masturbation, lascivious exhibition of the genitals or public area of a person.”

Elements of the Crime of Acts of Lasciviousness

“1. The accused commits the act of sexual intercourse or lascivious conduct.

2. The said act is performed with a child exploited in prostitution or subjected to sexual abuse.

3. The child, whether male or female, is below 18 years of age.”

Attempted Rape Versus Acts Of Lasciviousness

"Like rape, the acts of lasciviousness are committed by intimidation or force, grave abuse of authority or fraudulent machinations. The victim is deprived of reason, unconscious, demented or under 12 years of age. The offended party in both rape and acts of lasciviousness can be a person of either sex.

However, the act will be considered as an attempted or frustrated rape if the offender clearly demonstrated that his purpose for performing the act is to lie with the offended woman. Lascivious acts are deemed preparatory acts in case of attempted rape. On the other hand, acts of lasciviousness are considered as the offender’s final objective. If the offender does not intend to have sexual intercourse, it will not be considered to be attempted rape. "

If the victim is under 12, it is child abuse under Republic Act No. 7610 and the penalty is one degree higher. Under Art. 339, acts of lasciviousness with the offended party’s consent are committed against a female under circumstance of seduction. Under Art. 336 Acts of lasciviousness are committed against a male or a female under the circumstance of rape.

The Restoration Of Death Penalty

History has already proven the existence of capital punishment. People have mixed reactions and opinions regarding death penalty. Some consider death penalty to be a way to curb crimes while others are sceptical with the idea especially as the fact remains that the law still appears toothless. During the pre-Spanish era, Filipinos have already practiced the death penalty. However, it was only an infrequent practice limited to flogging, fines and slavery. The most common form of death sentence at the time was hanging and decapitation. Prior to abolishing death penalty, the Philippines had the world’s largest death row population.

Although the Pangilinan Law puts an exemption to minors who commit crimes with impunity, there was a time when the country could legally execute a minor. This is due to the belief that minors were considered adults at the time. The minor offender who earned death sentence was Marcial “Baby” Ama who was only 16 years old when he was sentenced to death via electric chair. The legal ages for men and women at the time were 16 and 14 respectively.

The death penalty was abolished during former President Corazon Aquino’s administration and restored in 1993 during the Ramos administration. Under Republic Act No. 7659, there are 46 crimes considered to be punishable by death. The death sentence would be carried out through lethal injection. In 1998, Leo Echegaray was executed for raping his step daughter. The execution was followed by six executions for heinous crimes. Death penalty was abolished by the Arroyo administration in 2001.

Death penalty was on hiatus for more than two decades and presumptive President Rodrigo Duterte considers re-imposing it. The restoration of death penalty has sparked endless debates especially when it comes to improving judicial system.

"Art. 81. When and how the death penalty is to be executed. -  The death sentence shall be executed with preference to any other and shall consist in putting the person under sentence to death by electrocution.  The death sentence shall be executed under the authority of the Director of Prisons, endeavoring so far as possible to mitigate the sufferings of the person under the sentence during electrocution as well as during the proceedings prior to the execution.

 "If the person under sentence so desires, he shall be anaesthesized at the moment of the execution.

"As soon as facilities are provided by the Bureau of Prisons, the method of carrying out the sentence shall be changed to gas poisoning.

"The death sentence shall be carried out not later than one (1) year after the judgment has become final."

Sec. 25. Article 83 of the same Code is hereby amended to read as follows:

"Art. 83. Suspension of the execution of the death sentence. -  The death sentence shall not be inflicted upon a woman while she is pregnant or within one (1) year after delivery, nor upon any person over seventy years of age.  In this last case, the death sentence shall be commuted to the penalty of reclusion perpetua with the accessory penalties provided in Article 40.

 "In all cases where the death sentence has become final, the records of the case shall be forwarded immediately by the Supreme Court to the Office of the President for possible exercise of the pardoning power."

Sec. 26. All laws, presidential decrees and issuances, executive orders, rules and regulations or parts thereof inconsistent with the provisions of this Act are hereby repealed or modified accordingly.

Sec. 27. If, for any reason or reasons, any part of the provision of this Act shall be held to be unconstitutional or invalid, other parts or provisions hereof which are not affected thereby shall continue to be in full force and effect.

When Can An Individual Be Found Guilty Of The Crime Of Serious Physical Injuries?

Although we try to leave a peaceful and trouble-free life as much as possible, there are times when we reach our boiling point causing us to explode at the slightest provocation. When you go overboard and cross lines, it is easy to use self-defense as an excuse for losing your temper. However, there is a law that corresponds to such violations. Whether it is a simple argument or suppressed anger and hate between parties, there is a consequence for the person who has inflicted physical pain to another person.

We may already be familiar with serious physical injuries, but how serious is serious? Is there supporting and tangible evidence that must be presented in order to support such claims? Article 262 to 266 tackles issues that physical injuries encompass.

PHYSICAL INJURIES

"Art. 262. Mutilation. — The penalty of reclusion temporal to reclusion perpetua shall be imposed upon any person who shall intentionally mutilate another by depriving him, either totally or partially, or some essential organ of reproduction.

Any other intentional mutilation shall be punished by prision mayor in its medium and maximum periods.

Art. 263. Serious physical injuries. — Any person who shall wound, beat, or assault another, shall be guilty of the crime of serious physical injuries and shall suffer:

1. The penalty of prision mayor, if in consequence of the physical injuries inflicted, the injured person shall become insane, imbecile, impotent, or blind;

2. The penalty of prision correccional in its medium and maximum periods, if in consequence of the physical injuries inflicted, the person injured shall have lost the use of speech or the power to hear or to smell, or shall have lost an eye, a hand, a foot, an arm, or a leg or shall have lost the use of any such member, or shall have become incapacitated for the work in which he was therefor habitually engaged;

3. The penalty of prision correccional in its minimum and medium periods, if in consequence of the physical injuries inflicted, the person injured shall have become deformed, or shall have lost any other part of his body, or shall have lost the use thereof, or shall have been ill or incapacitated for the performance of the work in which he as habitually engaged for a period of more than ninety days;

4. The penalty of arresto mayor in its maximum period to prision correccional in its minimum period, if the physical injuries inflicted shall have caused the illness or incapacity for labor of the injured person for more than thirty days.

If the offense shall have been committed against any of the persons enumerated in Article 246, or with attendance of any of the circumstances mentioned in Article 248, the case covered by subdivision number 1 of this Article shall be punished by reclusion temporal in its medium and maximum periods; the case covered by subdivision number 2 by prision correccional in its maximum period to prision mayor in its minimum period; the case covered by subdivision number 3 by prision correccional in its medium and maximum periods; and the case covered by subdivision number 4 by prision correccional in its minimum and medium periods.

The provisions of the preceding paragraph shall not be applicable to a parent who shall inflict physical injuries upon his child by excessive chastisement.

Art. 264. Administering injurious substances or beverages. — The penalties established by the next preceding article shall be applicable in the respective case to any person who, without intent to kill, shall inflict upon another any serious, physical injury, by knowingly administering to him any injurious substance or beverages or by taking advantage of his weakness of mind or credulity.

Art. 265. Less serious physical injuries. — Any person who shall inflict upon another physical injuries not described in the preceding articles, but which shall incapacitate the offended party for labor for ten days or more, or shall require medical assistance for the same period, shall be guilty of less serious physical injuries and shall suffer the penalty of arresto mayor.

Whenever less serious physical injuries shall have been inflicted with the manifest intent to kill or offend the injured person, or under circumstances adding ignominy to the offense in addition to the penalty of arresto mayor, a fine not exceeding 500 pesos shall be imposed.

Any less serious physical injuries inflicted upon the offender’s parents, ascendants, guardians, curators, teachers, or persons of rank, or persons in authority, shall be punished by prision correccional in its minimum and medium periods, provided that, in the case of persons in authority, the deed does not constitute the crime of assault upon such person.

Art. 266. Slight physical injuries and maltreatment. — The crime of slight physical injuries shall be punished:

1. By arresto menor when the offender has inflicted physical injuries which shall incapacitate the offended party for labor from one to nine days, or shall require medical attendance during the same period.

2. By arresto menor or a fine not exceeding 20 pesos and censure when the offender has caused physical injuries which do not prevent the offended party from engaging in his habitual work nor require medical assistance.

3. By arresto menor in its minimum period or a fine not exceeding 50 pesos when the offender shall ill-treat another by deed without causing any injury.”



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