THE REVISED PENAL CODE BOOK 1

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THE REVISED PENAL CODE BOOK 1

 

CRIMINAL LAW, defined.

            It is that branch or division of municipal law which defines crimes, treats of their nature, and provides for their punishment.

A crime is an act or omission which is punishable under the law.  

If the crime is punished by the Revised Penal Code, it is called a felony. 

If it is a violation of a Special Law, it is called an offense.

If it is punished by an Ordinance,  it is referred to as an Infraction of an Ordinance.

Nature of Criminal Law:

1. SUBSTANTIVE LAW:   It defines the State’s right to inflict punishment and the liability of the offenders.

            Under its police power,  the State is justified in punishing crimes  in order to administer justice.   The State has an existence of its own to maintain, a conscience to assert, and moral principles to be vindicated.   Penal justice rests primarily on the moral rightfulness of the punishment imposed.   (Albert)

2. PUBLIC LAW:   It deals with the relation of the individual with the state.

GENERAL RULE: The power to define and punish an act as a crime is vested with the legislative body of government.

By way of exception to the principle of non-delegation of legislative powers, the power may be delegated to the Chief Executive in cases of extreme national emergency,  as provided under Section 23, par. 2, Article VI of the 1987 Philippine Constitution.

 

CONSTITUTIONAL  LIMITATIONS on the passage of PENAL LAWS

1. That Congress cannot pass an ex post facto law or a bill of attainder.   (Section 22, Article III, 1987 Philippine Constitution)

An ex post facto law is one which:

  • Makes criminal an act done before the passage of the law and which was innocent when done, and punishes such an act.
  • Aggravates a crime, or makes it greater than it was, when committed.
  • Changes the punishment and inflicts a greater punishment than the law annexed to the crime when committed.
  • Alters the legal rules on evidence, and authorizes conviction upon less or different testimony than the law required at the time of the commission of the offense.
  • Assumes to regulate civil rights and remedies only but in effect imposes penalty or deprivation of a right for something which when done was lawful
  • Deprives a person accused of a crime of some lawful protection to which he has become entitled, such as the protection of a proclamation of amnesty.

BILL OF ATTAINDER.  It is a legislative act which inflicts punishment without the benefit of a judicial trial.  Its essence is the substitution of a legislative act  for a judicial determination of guilt.   (Section 14, Art. III, 1987 Philippine Constitution)

OTHER CONSTITUTIONAL LIMITATIONS:

2. Penal laws must be general in application.  Otherwise, it would violate the equal protection clause of the constitution.

3. Congress cannot provide for a cruel, degrading  or inhuman  punishment nor can it impose excessive fines.  (Section 19, Art. III, 1987 Philippine Constitution)

 

CHARACTERISTICS OF CRIMINAL LAW

I.  GENERALITY:

    “Penal laws and those of public security and safety shall be obligatory upon all who live or sojourn in Philippine territory, subject to the principles of public international law.”  (Article 14, New Civil Code)

EXCEPTIONS:

1.  It does NOT apply to cases covered by  the principles of public international law.

Members of the diplomatic corps of a country who enjoy criminal immunity:

 Sovereigns and other chiefs/ heads  of state.Ambassadors,ministers plenipotentiary, ministers resident, charges d’ affaires andattaches

2. Cases covered by treaty or treaty stipulations

3. Cases covered by Laws of Preferential Application

 

Composition of the National Territory:

1. TERRITORIAL JURISDICTION:  The jurisdiction exercised by  a country over bodies of land,  as defined in the constitution.

2. FLUVIAL JURISDICTION:  The jurisdiction over maritime and interior or internal  waters.

3. AERIAL JURISDICTION:  The jurisdiction over the atmosphere.

By Article 2 of the  Revised Penal Code, our Penal laws may also apply outside of Philippine

Territory  against those who:

  • Should commit an offense while on a Philippine ship or airship;

            If  a crime is committed on board a  foreign vessel and it is a merchant vessel,  there are two rules as to jurisdiction:               

            1.   The FRENCH RULE   which states that crimes committed on board a foreign merchant vessel while on the waters of another country are not triable in that country unless these affect the peace and security or the safety of the state is endangered;  

            2. The ENGLISH RULE  which provides that such crimes are triable in that country unless they merely affect the internal management of the vessel.   

       Our country adheres to the English Rule.       

            Nonetheless, we must also consider the provisions of Section 15, Rule 110 of the 2000 Rules on Criminal Procedure which provides:

            a.  The criminal action is instituted and tried in the court of the municipality or territory where the offense was committed or any of its essential ingredients occurred;

            b.  Where the crime is committed in a train, aircraft or other private  or public vehicle in the course of its trip,  the criminal action is instituted at the municipality or territory where the same passed during its trip,  including the place of departure and arrival;

            c.  Where the crime is committed on board a vessel while in the course of its voyage,  the criminal action shall be instituted in the Court of first port of entry or of any municipality or territory where the vessel passed during the voyage, subject to the generally accepted principles of international law   and

    d.   Crimes under Article 2 of the Revised Penal Code are cognizable by the Court where the criminal action is filed.

(b) Should forge or counterfeit any coin or currency   note of the Philippines or obligations and securities issued by the Government of the Philippines;

(c) Should be liable for acts connected with the introduction into the Philippines of the obligations and securities mentioned in the preceding number;

(d) While being public officers or employees, should commit an offense in the exercise of their functions; or

Should commit any of the crimes against national security and the law of nations, defined in Title One of Book two of the revised Penal Code.

The underlying reasons behind these five (5) instances are:

             (a)  To preserve the territorial integrity of the Philippines;  (b)  To preserve the economic integrity of the country;  (c)  To preserve the integrity of Philippine public administration and (d) To maintain the continuity & integrity of the State.

 

III.  IRRETROSPECTIVITY  OR PROSPECTIVITY

“Laws shall have no retroactive effect,  unless the contrary is provided”.   (Article 4, New Civil Code)

This characteristic provides that the law does not have any retroactive effect, except if it favors the offender,  unless he is a habitual delinquent.   (Article 22, Revised Penal Code).  This rule also applies to administrative rulings and circulars (ABS CBN vs CTA 108 SCRA 142).

EXCEPTION:  Whenever a new statute dealing with the crime establishes conditions more lenient or favorable to the accused, it can be given a retroactive effect.

EXCEPTION to the EXCEPTION: 

Where the new law is expressly made inapplicable to pending actions or existing causes of action.

Where the offender is a habitual delinquent.

            A habitual delinquent is one who, within a period of ten years from the date of his last conviction or last release of any of the following crimes:  robbery (robo),  theft (hurto), estafa or swindling,  falsification, serious and less serious physical injuries,  is found guilty of any of the said crimes a third time or oftener.   (Art. 62, par. 5, RPC)

 

HOW PENAL LAWS  ARE CONSTRUED:

PRO REO: Penal Laws are liberally construed in favor of the offender.

Penal laws are construed strictly against the state,  but only when the law is ambiguous and there are doubts as to its proper interpretation (People vs. Gatchalian, 104 Phil 664)

In case of conflict between the English Text and the Spanish Text in the construction,   the latter text prevails

EQUIPOISE  RULE:       When the evidence presented in court is susceptible of two interpretations, one consistent with innocence and the other with guilt,  the same should be resolved in favor of the accused.  (Corpus vs. People, 194 SCRA 73).

 

SCHOOLS  OF THOUGHT  IN  CRIMINAL  LAW

CLASSICAL  SCHOOL:

 1.  The basis of criminal liability is human free will and the purpose of the penalty is retribution

2.  That man is essentially a moral creature with an absolute free will to choose between good and evil, thereby placing more stress upon the effect or result of the felonious act, than upon the man, the criminal himself.

POSITIVIST   SCHOOL:

That man is subdued occasionally by a strange and morbid phenomenon which constrains him to do wrong in spite of, or contrary to his volition.

 That crime is essentially a social and natural phenomenon, and as such, it cannot be treated and checked by the application of abstract principles of law and jurisprudence nor by the imposition of a punishment.

FELONIES

            Art.  3.  Definitions. – Acts and  omissions punishable by law are felonies (delitos).

   Felonies are committed not only by means of deceit (dolo) but also by means of fault (culpa). 

             There is deceit when the act is performed with deliberate intent; and there is fault when the wrongful act results from imprudence, negligence, lack of foresight, or lack of skill.

Elements of Felonies, in general:

There must be an act or omission.

An  ACT  is  a bodily movement tending to produce some effect in the external world.

An OMISSION purports  inaction – the  failure to perform a positive duty which  one is obliged by law to do. 

2. The act or omission is  punishable by the Revised Penal Code.

3. It is committed  by means of dolo or culpa.

 

Certain omissions which are punishable under the Revised Penal Code, to wit:

1. Misprision of Treason (Art. 116)

2. Abandonment of persons in danger (Art. 275)

3. Illegal Exactions (Arts. 213, par. 2) – Failing voluntarily to issue a receipt, as provided by law, for any sum of money collected by him officially.

4. Failure of Accountable Officer to render Accounts (Art. 218)

5. Failure of a responsible public officer to render accounts before leaving the country (Art. 219)

6. Failure to make delivery of public funds or property (Art. 221)

7. Rule 130, Section 21, on the Privileged Communication Rule

Classification of felonies according to the means they are committed:

1.  INTENTIONAL FELONIES:

            In this class of felony,  the offender has the intention to do or cause an injury to another.   Felonies by dolo are thus characterized by the presence of malice in its commission.

2.  CULPABLE FELONIES:

            In this class, a person causes an injury, without intent to cause an evil.  Felonies by culpa are characterized by the absence of malice.

Culpa can either arise from:

a.  IMPRUDENCE:

      This imports a deficiency of actionthat a person fails to take the necessary precaution to avoid injury or damage.   It arises because of one’s lack of skill.  

b.  NEGLIGENCE:

            This imports a deficiency of perception – there is a failure to pay proper attention and to use diligence in foreseeing the injury or damage impending to be caused.   It arises because of a lack of foresight.

 

Requisites of Dolo:

1. Criminal INTENT  on the part of the offender.

            INTENT is the purpose to use a particular means to effect a result.

            Generally, Intent is presumed from the commission of an unlawful act.

2.  FREEDOM of action in doing the act on the part of the offender.

            One who acts without freedom is no longer a human being but a tool.   Thus, if one acts under the compulsion of an irresistible force or because of an uncontrollable fear is criminally exempt under Art. 12, Section 5.

3.  INTELLIGENCE on the part of the offender in doing the act.

            One without intelligence necessarily does not have the capability to determine the morality of his acts.

Criminal intent is presumed from the commission of an unlawful act, but not from the proof of the commission of an act which is not unlawful.

“Actus non facit reum nisi mens sit rea”.

            The act itself does not make a man guilty unless his intention were so.

“Actus me invito factus  non est meus actus”.

             An act done by me against my will is not my act.

Criminal Intent can be  categorized into two:

 

General Criminal  Intent:  

             This  is presumed from the mere doing of a wrong act.  So this does not require proof, the burden is upon the wrongdoer to prove that he acted without such criminal intent.

2. Specific Criminal Intent: 

     This is not presumed because it is an ingredient or element of a crime, like intent to kill in the crimes of attempted or frustrated  homicide/parricide/murder or intent to gain in Robbery or Theft. 

     The prosecution has the onus probandi.

INTENT   distinguished   from  MOTIVE:

Motive,  when   relevant:

            1. When the identity of the accused is in dispute

            2. For purposes of defense

            3. In determining the sanity of the accused

            4. In indirect assault (Art. 249)

            5. When there are no eyewitnesses and suspicion is likely to fall on a number of suspects

            6. In defense of strangers (Art. 11, par. 3)

            7. When the evidence is circumstantial.

            8. When there  are two antagonistic versions of the killing.

When motive not necessary:

            1. The identity is known/ positive identification.

            2. Where the accused admits the crime.

 

MISTAKE OF FACT:

Misapprehension of fact on the part of the person who caused injury to another. He is not, however, criminally liable because he did not act with criminal intent.

Ignorantia facti excusat.

Requisites of mistake of fact as a defense:

            a. The act done would have been lawful had the facts been as the accused believed them to be.

            b. The intention of the accused in performing the act is lawful.

            c.  The mistake was without fault or carelessness on the part of the accused.

            Case:  People vs. Ah Chong, 15 Phil 488.

             Contrasted with People vs. Oanis 74 Phil 257:

 

Requisites  of   Culpa:

Criminal NEGLIGENCE on the part of the offender — The crime was the result of negligence, reckless imprudence, lack of foresight, or lack of skill.

2. FREEDOM of action in doing the act — He did not  act under duress.

3. INTELLIGENCE on the part of the offender in performing the negligent act.

 

MALA IN  SE   and   MALA PROHIBITA,  distinguished:

MALA IN SE: 

Criminal liability is based on the moral trait of the offender, thus,  liability would only arise when there is dolo or culpa in the commission of the punishable act.

Good faith or lack of criminal intent is a valid defense, unless the crime is the result of culpa.

The degree of accomplishment of the crime is taken into account in punishing the offender.  Thus, there are attempted, frustrated, and consummated stages in the commission of a crime.

  When there is more than one offender, the degree of participation of each in the commission of the crime is taken into account in imposing the penalty.  Thus offenders are classified as principals, accomplice, and accessory.

 

MALA PROHIBITA

The moral trait of the offender is not considered. It is enough that the prohibited act be voluntarily done.

 Good faith is not a defense.

The act gives rise to a crime only when it is consummated.

Mitigating and aggravating circumstances are not taken into account in imposing the penalty, because the moral trait of the offender is not considered.

The degree of participation of any offender is not considered.

HOW CRIMINAL LIABILITY IS INCURRED

Article  4.  Criminal liability is incurred:

(a)   by any person committing a felony, although the wrongful act be different from that intended; 

(b) by any person committing any act which would be an offense against persons or property were    it not for the inherent impossibility of its accomplishment or on account of the employment of inadequate means.

Three situations covered by Article 4, paragraph 1

ABERRATIO ICHTUS 

            (Mistake in the Blow):

            The case will be subject to the provisions of Art. 48 on Complex Crimes.

b. PRAETER INTENTIONEM 

            (The Blow went beyond the intent):

            The offender, though, may be entitled to the mitigating circumstance of “lack of intent to commit so grave a wrong as that committed” under paragraph 3 of Article 13.

c. ERROR IN PERSONAE

             (Mistake in the Identity of the Victim)

            The penalty for the offender will be covered by the provisions of Article 49 of the Revised Penal Code.           


Rationale for the Rule in Article 4:
 “El que es la causa de la causa es la causa del  mal  causado”.

PROXIMATE CAUSE:     That cause which,  in natural  and continuous sequence, unbroken by any efficient supervening cause, produces the injury  and  without which  the result would not have  occurred.  ( Vda. De Bataclan vs. Medina 102 Phil 181)

A proximate cause is not necessarily the immediate cause.  This may be a cause which is far and remote from the consequence which sets into motion other causes which resulted in the felony.

            When is death presumed to be the natural consequence of the physical injuries that had been inflicted:

 1. The victim at the time the physical injuries were inflicted was in good health

 2. Death may be expected because of the physical injuries

 3. Death ensued within a reasonable time

However, the injury is NOT the DIRECT, NATURAL and LOGICAL consequence of the felony committed (or proximate cause):

            If the consequences produced have resulted from a DISTINCT ACT or FACT ABSOLUTELY FOREIGN from the criminal act.

Paragraph 2, Article 4:

IMPOSSIBLE CRIME, defined.

            It is an act which would be an offense against person or property were it not for the inherent impossibility of its accomplishment or on account of the employment of inadequate or ineffectual means.

Requisites of an IMPOSSIBLE CRIME:

 1. The act performed would be an offense against persons or property;

 2. The act was done with evil intent;

 3. Its accomplishment is inherently impossible, or that the means employed is either inadequate or ineffectual;

 4. The act performed should not constitute a violation of another provision of the Revised Penal Code.

Nature of Impossibility:

The inherent  impossibility contemplated under Article 4, paragraph 2 is either legal, factual or physical impossibility.

  

            1. Legal Impossibility

            There is legal impossibility if the intended acts,  even if completed,  would not amount to a felony.

             2. Factual or Physical Impossibility

            There is factual or physical impossibility  where extraneous circumstances unknown to the actor or beyond his control prevent the consummation of the intended felony.   (Saturnino Intod vs.  CA et al., 215 SCRA 52).

            Article 5.    Duty of the court in connection with acts which should be repressed but which are not covered by law, and cases of excessive penalties. –            Whenever a court has knowledge of any act which it may deem proper to repress and which is not punishable by law,  it shall render the proper decision, and  shall report  to the Chief Executive, through the Department of Justice,   the reasons which induce the  court to believe that said act  should be made the subject of penal  legislation.

            In the same way the court shall submit to the Chief Executive, through the Department of Justice,  such statement or report as may be deemed proper,  without suspending the execution of the sentence,   when a strict enforcement of the provisions of this code would result in the imposition of a clearly excessive penalty,   taking into consideration the degree of malice and the injury caused by the offense.

STAGES  OF EXECUTION

    Article 6.   Consummated, frustrated, and attempted felonies. – Consummated, as well as those which are frustrated and attempted are punishable. 

            A felony is consummated when all the elements necessary for its execution and accomplishment are present;  

    and it is frustrated when the offender performs all the acts of execution which would produce the felony as a consequence but which, nevertheless, do not produce it by reason of causes independent of the will of the perpetrator.

            There is an attempt when the offender commences the commission of a felony directly by overt acts, and does not perform all the acts which should produce the felony by reason of some cause or accident other than his own spontaneous desistance.

Stages in the development of a crime:

1.  Internal Acts:

    “Cogitationis poenam nemo meretur”. – No man deserves a punishment for a thought.

2.  External  Acts:

            Included in external acts are:

a. Preparatory Acts:

    There are ordinarily NOT punishable,  except when the law provides for their punishment in certain cases.  

b. Acts of execution:

    These are already punishable under the Revised Penal Code.

 

ATTEMPTED  STAGE:

There is an attempt when the offender commences the commission of a felony directly by overt acts, and does not perform all the acts of execution which should produce the felony by reason of some cause or accident other than his own spontaneous desistance.

OVERT ACTS:   These refer to some physical activity or deed, indicating the intention to commit a particular crime, more than a mere planning or preparation,  which if carried to its complete termination following its natural course,  without being frustrated by external obstacles or by voluntary desistance of the perpetrator,  will logically and necessarily ripen into a concrete offense.

 

INDETERMINATE  OFFENSE:   One where the purpose of the offender in performing an act is NOT certain.   Its nature in relation to its objective is ambiguous.

 

Important phrases   in  the   Attempted  Stage of  a felony:

1. Directly by  overt acts:  The term comprehends the fact that the offender MUST PERSONALLY EXECUTE the felony

2. Does not perform all the acts of execution

3. By reason of a  CAUSE  or ACCIDENT

4. Other than his own spontaneous desistance

SUBJECTIVE PHASE:   That portion of the acts constituting the crime, starting from the point where the offender BEGINS the commission of the crime to that point where he has still CONTROL over his acts,  including their natural course.

II.  FRUSTRATED  FELONY:

            The felony is frustrated when the offender performs all the acts of execution that  would produce the felony as a consequence but the felony is nevertheless not produced by reason of causes independent of the will of the perpetrator.

            Requisites:

            1.  The offender performs all acts of execution

            2.  All acts performed would produce the felony as a consequence

            3.  But the felony is not produced

            4.  By reason of causes independent of the will of the perpetrator.

 CONSUMMATED  FELONY:

When all the elements necessary for its execution and accomplishment are present.  

When not all the elements are proved, the consequences are:

1.  The felony is NOT consummated.

2.  The felony is not committed.

3.  Another felony is committed.


To determine whether the crime is only attempted,  frustrated or consummated, we should consider:

A:  THE NATURE OF THE CRIME:

B.  THE ELEMENTS CONSTITUTING THE FELONY:

C:  THE MANNER OF COMMITTING THE SAME:

            1.  FORMAL CRIMES:   These are consummated in one instant.

            2.  Crimes consummated by mere attempt or proposal by overt act

            3.  Felony by omission

            4.  Crimes requiring the intervention of two persons to commit them are consummated by mere agreement,

            5.  MATERIAL CRIMES:   These have three stages of execution

Article 7.   When light felonies are punishable. – Light felonies are punishable only when they have been consummated, with the exception of those committed against persons or property.

The provisions of Article 7 of the Revised Penal Code must be discussed and interrelated with the following other provisions of the Revised Penal Code, viz:

            Article 9 – On the Classification of Felonies according to Gravity

            Article 16 – On Persons who are criminally liable for felonies

    Article 25 – On Classification of Penalties

    Article 26 – On Classification of Fines

    Article 27 – On Duration of Penalties

    Article 71 – The Scale for Graduating Penalties by Degrees

            Article 9.  Grave felonies, less grave felonies, and light felonies. – Grave  felonies are those to which the law attaches the capital punishment or penalties which in any of their periods are afflictive, in accordance with article 25 of this Code.

            Less grave felonies are those which the law punishes with penalties which in their maximum period are correctional, in accordance with the above-mentioned article.

            Light felonies are those infractions of law for the commission of which the penalty of arresto menor or a fine not exceeding 200 pesos or both, is provided.

            PERSONS CRIMINALLY LIABLE FOR FELONIES

            Art.  16:  Who are criminally liable:  The following are criminally liable for grave and less grave felonies:

            1.  Principals

            2.  Accomplices

            3.  Accessories

            For light felonies:

            1.  Principals

            2.  Accomplices

 

CLASSIFICATION OF PENALTIES

Art.  25.  Penalties which may be imposed. – The penalties which may be imposed, according to this Code, and their different classes, are those included in the following  SCALE

 

PRINCIPAL PENALTIES

Capital Punishment:

Death

Afflictive Penalties:

Reclusion Perpetua

Reclusion Temporal

Perpetual or temporary absolute disqualification

Perpetual or temporary special disqualification

Prision mayor

Correccional Penalties:

Prision correccional

Arresto Mayor

Suspension

Destierro

Light Penalties:

Arresto menor

Public censure

Penalties common to the three preceding classes:

Fine, and Bond to keep the peace.

 

ACCESSORY PENALTIES

Perpetual or temporary absolute disqualification

Perpetual or temporary special disqualification

Suspension from public office, the right to vote and be voted for, the profession or calling

Civil interdiction

Indemnification

Forfeiture or confiscation of instruments and proceeds of the offense

Payment of cost.

            Art.  26.–Fine  When afflictive, correctional, or light penalty.

             A fine, whether imposed as an alternative penalty, shall be considered an afflictive penalty, if it exceeds 6,000 pesos.

            A  correctional penalty, if it does not exceed 6, 000 pesos but is not less than 200 pesos.

            A  light penalty, if it be less than 200 pesos.

If the penalty is exactly P 200.00 – light – if the prescription of the felony is in question. 

It is correctional if the prescription of the penalty is in question.

 

DURATION AND EFFECT OF PENALTIES

            Art.  27.  Reclusion perpetua.  20 years and 1 day to forty years.

     Reclusion temporal.  12 years and 1 day to 20 years.

               

     Prision mayor and temporary disqualification.  6 years and 1 day to 12 years, except when the disqualification is imposed as an accessory penalty, its duration shall be that of the principal penalty.

               

    Prision correccional, suspension and destierro.  6 months and 1 day to 6 years, except when suspension is imposed as an accessory penalty, its duration shall be that of the principal penalty.

                

    Arresto mayor.  1 month and 1 day to 6 months

               

    Arresto menor. 1 day to 30 days.

              

    Bond to keep the peace – The bond to keep the peace shall be required to cover such period of time as the court may determine.

            Art. 70. Successive service of sentence. – When the culprit has to serve two or more penalties, he shall serve them simultaneously if the nature of the penalties will so permit; otherwise, the following rules shall be observed:

            In the imposition of the penalties, the order of their respective severity shall be followed so that they may be executed successively or as nearly as may be possible, should a pardon have been granted as to the penalty or penalties first imposed, or should they have been served out. 

            For the purpose of applying the provisions of the next succeeding paragraph, the respective severity of the penalties shall be determined in accordance with the following scale:

            1. Death

            2. Reclusion Perpetua

            3. Reclusion Temporal

            4. Prision Mayor

            5. Prision Correccional

            6. Arresto Mayor

            7. Arresto Menor

            8. Destierro

            9. Perpetual absolute disqualification

            10. Temporal absolute disqualification

            11.  Suspension from public office, the right to vote and be voted for, the right to follow profession or calling, and

            12. Public censure.

THE THREE-FOLD RULE

Notwithstanding the provisions of the rule next preceding, the maximum duration of the convict’s sentence shall not be more than threefold the length of time corresponding to the most severe of the penalties imposed upon him. No other penalty to which he may be liable shall be inflicted after the sum of those imposed equals the said maximum period.

Such maximum period shall in no case exceed forty years.

In applying the provisions of this rule the duration of perpetual penalties (pena perpetua) shall be computed at thirty years. (As amended by Com. Act No. 217)

Art. 71. Graduated scales. – In the cases in which the law prescribes a penalty lower or higher by one or more degree than another given penalty, the rules prescribed in Article 61 shall be observed in graduating such penalty.

The lower or higher penalty shall be taken from the graduated scale in which is comprised the given penalty.

The courts, in applying such lower or higher penalty, shall observe the following graduated scales:

SCALE NO. 1

            1. Death

            2. Reclusion Perpetua

            3. Reclusion Temporal

            4.  Prision Mayor

            5. Prision Correccional

            6. Arresto Mayor

            7. Destierro

            8.  Arresto Menor

            9. Public Censure

            10. Fine

SCALE NO. 2 (Under Article 71)

            1.  Perpetual absolute disqualification

            2.  Temporary absolute disqualification

            3.  Suspension from public office, the right to vote and be voted for, and the right to follow a profession or calling

            4.  Public censure

            5.  Fine

           

            Article 71 provides for the scale which should be observed in graduating the penalties by degrees in accordance with Art. 61.  Note that in Art. 71, destierro is placed above arresto menor. The reason for this is that destierro, being classified as a correctional penalty, is higher than arresto menor, a light penalty.  Art. 71 paragraph 2 speaks of a lower or higher penalty. Article 70 speaks of severity.

Article 8.          Conspiracy and proposal to commit felony. – Conspiracy  and proposal to commit felony are punishable only in the cases in which the law specially provides a penalty therefor.

A conspiracy exists when two or more persons come to an agreement concerning the commission of a felony and decide to commit it.       

There is proposal when the person who has decided to commit a felony proposes its execution to some other person or persons.

            Article 10.  Offenses not subject to the provisions of this code.   Offenses which are or in the future may be punishable under special laws are not subject to the provisions of this Code. This Code shall be supplementary to such laws, unless the latter should specially provide the contrary.

            The following provisions of the revised Penal Code on penalties can NOT be applied to offenses punishable under Special Laws:

            1.  Article 6 on the Attempted and Frustrated Stages of a Felony

            2.  Articles 18 and 19 on Accomplices and Accessories

            3.  Articles 50 to 57 stating that the penalty for the Principal in an attempted felony is two (2) degrees lower and that in the Frustrated Degree it is one (1) degree lower.

            4.  Articles 13 and 14 on Mitigating and Aggravating Circumstances   

            5.Article 64 on the Rules on application of penalties with 3 periods

 

CIRCUMSTANCES WHICH AFFECT  CRIMINAL LIABILITY

Basically, there are five (5)  circumstances which affect criminal liability:

JUSTIFYING CIRCUMSTANCES

Those where the acts of a person are said to be  in accordance with the law, so that he had not transgressed the law, and has no criminal or civil liability, save in Paragraph 4 of Article 11 where the civil liability is borne by the person benefited by the act.

 

EXEMPTING CIRCUMSTANCES:

 Those where there is an absence of the element of voluntariness, and thus, though there is a crime, there is still no criminal liability.

 

MITIGATING CIRCUMSTANCES:

Those that have the effect of reducing the penalty because there is a diminution of any of the elements of DOLO or CULPA which makes the act voluntary or because of the lesser perversity of the offender.

 

AGGRAVATING CIRCUMSTANCES:

Those which serve to increase the penalty without exceeding the maximum provided by law because of the greater perversity of the offender as shown by the motivating power of the commission of the crime, the time and  place of its commission, the means employed or the personal circumstances of the offender.

ALTERNATIVE CIRCUMSTANCES:

  Those which are either aggravating or mitigating according to the nature and effects of the crime and other conditions attending its commission.

Article 11.  Justifying circumstances.  – The  following do not incur any criminal liability:

Paragraph 1.  SELF-DEFENSE:

Anyone who acts in defense of his person or rights, provided that the following circumstances concur:

1.  Unlawful aggression

2.  Reasonable necessity of the means employed to repel it;

Lack of sufficient provocation on the part of the person defending himself.

Art.  11, Paragraph 2.   DEFENSE OF RELATIVES: 

            Anyone who acts in defense of the person or rights of his spouse, ascendants, descendants, or legitimate, natural, or adopted brothers or sisters or of his relatives by affinity      in the same degrees, and those by consanguinity within the fourth civil degree, provided that the first and second requisites prescribed in the next preceding circumstance are present, and the further requisite , in case the provocation was given by the person attacked, that the one making defense had no part therein.

RELATIVES WHO CAN BE DEFENDED:

Spouse

 Ascendants

 Descendants

  Legitimate or illegitimate   or adopted brothers or sisters, or relatives by affinity in the same degree

 Relatives by consanguinity within the fourth civil degree.

           

Article 11, Paragraph 3:   DEFENSE  OF STRANGERS

            Anyone who acts in defense of the person or rights of a stranger, provided that the first and second requisites mentioned in the first circumstance of this article are present and that the person defending be not induced by revenge, resentment or other evil motive.  

Who are strangers:  Any person not included in the enumeration of relatives mentioned in paragraph 2 of this article is considered a stranger for the purpose of paragraph 3.

Article 11, Paragraph 4:  AVOIDANCE OF GREATER  EVIL OR INJURY:

            Any person who, in order to avoid an evil or injury, does an act which causes injury to another, provided that the following requisites are present:

First. That the evil sought to be avoided actually exists;

Second. That the injury feared be greater than that done to avoid it;

Third. That there be no other practical or less harmful means of preventing it.

           

Article 11, Paragraph 5:  FULFILLMENT OF DUTY OR LAWFUL EXERCISE OF RIGHT OR OFFICE:  

            Any person who acts in the fulfillment of duty or in the lawful exercise of a right or office.

Requisites:

(a) That the accused acted in the performance of a duty or in the lawful exercise of a right or office;

(b) That the injury caused or the offense committed be the necessary consequence of the due performance of duty or the lawful exercise of such right or office.   (Re: People vs. Oanis)

Article 11, Paragraph 6: OBEDIENCE TO AN ORDER LAWFULLY ISSUED FOR SOME LAWFUL PURPOSE: 

            Any person who acts in obedience to an order     issued by a superior for some lawful purpose.

           

Requisites:

(a)  That an order has been issued by a superior.

(b)  That such order must be for some legal purpose.

(c)  That the means used by the subordinate to carry out said order is lawful.

Article 11.  Justifying circumstances.  – The  following do not incur any criminal liability:

Paragraph 1.  SELF-DEFENSE:

Anyone who acts in defense of his person or rights, provided that the following circumstances concur:

1.  Unlawful aggression

2.  Reasonable necessity of the means employed to repel it;

Lack of sufficient provocation on the part of the person defending himself.

            Art.  11, Paragraph 2.   DEFENSE OF RELATIVES: 

            Anyone who acts in defense of the person or rights of his spouse, ascendants, descendants, or legitimate, natural, or adopted brothers or sisters or of his relatives by affinity      in the same degrees, and those by consanguinity within the fourth civil degree, provided that the first and second requisites prescribed in the next preceding circumstance are present, and the further requisite , in case the provocation was given by the person attacked, that the one making defense had no part therein.

RELATIVES WHO CAN BE DEFENDED:

Spouse

 Ascendants

 Descendants

  Legitimate or illegitimate   or adopted brothers or sisters, or relatives by affinity in the same degree

 Relatives by consanguinity within the fourth civil degree.

           

Article 11, Paragraph 3:   DEFENSE  OF STRANGERS: 

            Anyone who acts in defense of the person or rights of a stranger, provided that the first and second requisites mentioned in the first circumstance of this article are present and that the person defending be not induced by revenge, resentment or other evil motive.  

Who are strangers:  Any person not included in the enumeration of relatives mentioned in paragraph 2 of this article is considered a stranger for the purpose of paragraph 3.

           

Article 11, Paragraph 4:  AVOIDANCE OF GREATER  EVIL OR INJURY:

            Any person who, in order to avoid an evil or injury, does an act which causes injury to another, provided that the following requisites are present:

First. That the evil sought to be avoided actually exists;

Second. That the injury feared be greater than that done to avoid it;

Third. That there be no other practical or less harmful means of preventing it.

           

Article 11, Paragraph 5:  FULFILLMENT OF DUTY OR LAWFUL EXERCISE OF RIGHT OR OFFICE:  

            Any person who acts in the fulfillment of duty or in the lawful exercise of a right or office.

Requisites:

(a) That the accused acted in the performance of a duty or in the lawful exercise of a right or office;

(b) That the injury caused or the offense committed be the necessary consequence of the due performance of duty or the lawful exercise of such right or office.   (Re: People vs. Oanis)

           

Article 11, Paragraph 6: OBEDIENCE TO AN ORDER LAWFULLY ISSUED FOR SOME LAWFUL PURPOSE: 

            Any person who acts in obedience to an order     issued by a superior for some lawful purpose.

           

Requisites:

(a)  That an order has been issued by a superior.

(b)  That such order must be for some legal purpose.

(c)  That the means used by the subordinate to carry out said order is lawful.



EXEMPTING CIRCUMSTANCES
               NON-IMPUTABILITY:  These are the grounds for exemption from punishment because there is wanting in the agent of the crime any  of the conditions which make the act voluntary or negligent.

            Article 12.  Circumstances which exempt from criminal liability. – The   following are exempt from criminal liability:

            Paragraph 1:

            An imbecile or an insane person, unless the latter has acted during a lucid interval.

           

            IMBECILITY:  

            One who, while advanced in age,  has a mental development comparable to that of children between two and seven years.  This circumstance is exempting in ALL CASES. 

            INSANITY: 

            This is exempting, unless one acted during a lucid interval.  To constitute insanity, there must be complete deprivation of intelligence or that there be a total deprivation of the freedom of the will.

Article 12,  Paragraphs  2 and 3

2.      A person under nine (9)  years of age.

A person over nine  (9) years of age and under fifteen (15), unless he has acted with discernment, in which case, such minor shall be proceeded against in accordance with article 192 of PD 603.

            NOTE:  On April 28, 2006,   Gloria Arroyo signed into law Republic Act No. 9344 otherwise known as the “JUVENILE JUSTICE  and WELFARE ACT OF 2006”.   The law became effective on May 21, 2006.     

           

            Under RA 9344 minors aged fifteen (15) and below are now absolutely exempt from  criminal liability.    If a minor above fifteen (15) but below eighteen (18) commits a crime,   he is not exempt from criminal liability unless it is shown that he acted with discernment.    However,  should the minor above fifteen (15) but below eighteen be found guilty,   RA 9344 also mandates the Courts to automatically suspend the sentence.   In all cases, the minor offender must be referred to the appropriate government agency for rehabilitation.

EXEMPTING CIRCUMSTANCES

            Article 12, Paragraph 4   :Any person who, while performing a lawful act with due care, causes an injury by mere accident without fault or intention of causing it.

            Elements:

            (a)  A person is performing a lawful act

            (b)  With due care

            (c)  He causes injury to another by mere accident

            (d) Without fault or intention of causing it.  (People vs.  Vitug,  8 CAR {2s} 905, 909)

            ACCIDENT:  Something that happens outside the sway of our will, and although it comes through some act of our will,  lies beyond the bounds of humanly  foreseeable  consequences.

EXEMPTING CIRCUMSTANCES

Article 12, Paragraph 5:  Any person who acts under the compulsion of an irresistible force.

Elements:

a. The compulsion is by means of physical force.

b. The physical force is  irresistible.

c. The physical force  comes from a third person.

The irresistible force must produce such an effect upon the individual that, in spite of all resistance, it reduces him to a mere instrument, and as such, incapable of committing a crime.  He must act not only without a will,  but against his will.

EXEMPTING CIRCUMSTANCES

            Article 12, Paragraph 6:   Any person who acts under the impulse of an uncontrollable fear of an equal or greater injury.

Elements:

a. That the threat which caused the fear is of an evil greater than or at least equal to, that which he is required to commit.

b. That it promises an evil of such gravity and imminence that the ordinary man would have succumbed to it. (US vs Elicanal,  35 Phil 209)

           

A person is compelled to commit a crime by another, but the compulsion is by means of intimidation or threat,   not by force or violence.   (Otherwise, the accused would be liable for Grave Coercion)

EXEMPTING CIRCUMSTANCES

            Article 12, Paragraph 7:  Any person who fails to perform an act required by law, when prevented by some lawful or insuperable cause.

           

            Elements:

            a. An act is required by law to be done.

            b. A person fails to perform such act/s.

            c. The failure to perform the  act was due to some lawful or insuperable cause.

            LAWFUL CAUSE:   Privileged Communication Rule – Under the Rules on Evidence, certain  persons in a relationship (such as that between spouses or between an Attorney and his Client) are prohibited from testifying in Court as to any information that the parties received, during the existence of the said relationship.   The information so received is considered privileged communication,   and thus causes a lawful cause to exempt a person from criminal liability should he not divulge the information, even on pain of criminal prosecution.  

            INSUPERABLE CAUSE:  The distance which prevented an officer from transporting an arrested person to the nearest authorities exempts the officer from liability for a Violation of the provisions of Article 125 of the Revised Penal Code punishing the crime called Delay in the Delivery of the Detained Prisoners to the Proper Judicial Authorities.

CIRCUMSTANCES WHICH MITIGATE  CRIMINAL LIABILITY

Classes:

1. Ordinary Mitigating Circumstances:  Those enumerated in subsections 1 to 10 of Article 13.

2. Privileged  Mitigating Circumstances: 

            a.  Article 68:   The penalty to be imposed upon a person under 18 years of age:

            nine (9) but under fifteen (15), with discernment – A discretionary penalty is imposed but ALWAYS LOWER  by TWO degrees.

            Over fifteen (15) and under eighteen (18) – The penalty NEXT LOWER than that imposed by law, but always in the proper period.

               b. Article 69:  The penalty to be imposed when the crime is not wholly excusable:

               c.  Article 64:   Rules for the application of penalties with three periods:    Determine whether there are present mitigating or aggravating circumstances – Thus:  Where there are two (2) mitigating circumstances without any aggravating circumstances,  the penalty NEXT LOWER shall be imposed,  according to the number and nature of such circumstance.

             d.  PRIVILEGED MITIGATING CIRCUMSTANCES applicable only to particular crimes

The following are the Mitigating circumstances:

           

Article  13,  Paragraph 1:        Those mentioned in the preceding chapter, when all the requisites necessary to justify the act or to exempt from criminal liability in the respective cases are not attendant

            Article  13,  Paragraph 2:  That the offender is under 18 years of age or over 70 years. In the case of the minor, he shall be proceeded against in accordance with article 192 of PD 603.

This provision  contemplates the following:

An offender over 9 but under 15 years of age who acted with discernment.

An offender 15 or over but under 18 years of age (Art. 68)

An offender who is over 70 years old.

Article 13,  Paragraph 3:  That the offender had no intention to commit so grave a wrong as that committed.

This is covered by the circumstance referred to as Praeter Intentionem – or that “the blow went beyond the intent”.

MITIGATING CIRCUMSTANCES

            Article  13,  Paragraph 4:  That sufficient provocation or threat on the part of the offended party immediately preceded the act.

PROVOCATION:  Any unjust or improper conduct or act of the offended party, capable of exciting, inciting or irritating any one.

Requisites:

That the provocation must be sufficient.

It must originate from the offended party.

The provocation must be immediate to the act, i.e., to the commission of the crime by the person who is provoked.

MITIGATING CIRCUMSTANCE

            Article  13,  Paragraph 5:  That the act was committed in the immediate vindication of a grave offense to the one committing the felony (delito), his spouse, ascendants, descendants, legitimate or illegitimate  or adopted brothers or sisters, or relatives by affinity within the same degree.

Requisites:

  • That there be a grave offense done to the one committing the felony, his spouse, ascendants, descendants, legitimate, natural or adopted brothers or sisters, or relatives by affinity within the same degrees.
  • The felony is committed in vindication of such grave offense. A LAPSE OF TIME is allowed between the vindication and the doing of the grave offense.

MITIGATING CIRCUMSTANCE

Article  13,  Paragraph 6:  That of having acted upon an impulse so powerful as naturally to have produced passion or obfuscation.

Reason:  When there are causes naturally producing in a person powerful  excitement,  he loses his reason and self-control,  thereby diminishing exercise of his will power. (US vs. Salandanan,  1 Phil 464)

Passion or obfuscation is mitigating only when the same arose from lawful sentiments.   It is NOT mitigating  when:

(a)  The act is committed in a spirit of lawlessness;

(b)  The act is committed in a spirit of revenge.

Requisites:

There must be an act, both unlawful and sufficient to produce such a condition of mind  and

Said act, which produced the obfuscation,  was not far removed from the commission of the crime by a considerable length of time,   during which the perpetrator may recover his equanimity.

MITIGATING CIRCUMSTANCE

Article  13,  Paragraph 7:  That the offender had voluntarily surrendered himself to a person in authority or his agents, or that he had voluntarily confessed his guilt before the court prior to the presentation of evidence for the prosecution.

There are two mitigating circumstances in this paragraph:

Voluntary surrender to a person in authority or his agents;

Voluntary plea of guilt.

MITIGATING CIRCUMSTANCE

Article  13,  Paragraph 8:  That the offender is deaf and dumb, blind, or otherwise suffering some physical defect which thus restricts his means of action, defense or communication with his fellow beings.

Article  13,  Paragraph 9:  Such illness of the offender as would diminish the exercise of the will power of the offender without however depriving him of the consciousness of his acts.

Requisites:

The illness of the offender must diminish the exercise of his will power.

That such illness should not deprive the offender of the consciousness of his acts.

AGGRAVATING CIRCUMSTANCES

MITIGATING CIRCUMSTANCE

Article  13,  Paragraph 10:  Any other circumstance of a similar nature and analogous to the aforementioned.

This provision  authorizes the Court to consider in favor of the accused “any other circumstance of a similar nature and analogous to those mentioned” ,  with reference to the provisions of  paragraphs  1  to 9 of  Article 13.

Four  Kinds  of  Aggravating Circumstances:

1.GENERIC:   Those that can generally apply to all crimes.

            e.g.   Dwelling, nighttime,  or recidivism

            In  Article 14,  paragraphs 1, 2, 3 (dwelling), 4, 5, 6, 9, 10, 14, 18, 19, 20   except  “by means of motor vehicles”  are generic.

2. SPECIFIC:   Those that apply only to  particular crimes.

            e.g.  Ignominy in crimes against Chastity or cruelty and treachery in crimes against Persons.   Thus,  Paragraph 3 (except dwelling),  15, 16, 17, and 21,  of Art. 14 are specific.

3. QUALIFYING:   Those that change the nature of the crime.

            e.g.  Alevosia  (treachery)  or evident premeditation;   Article 248  also enumerates the Qualifying Aggravating Circumstances which qualify Homicide to Murder.

4. INHERENT:  Those that must of necessity accompany the commission of the crime.  (Art.  62,  paragraph 2)

     e.g.  Evident Premeditation is inherent in Robbery,  Theft, Estafa, Adultery and Concubinage.

AGGRAVATING CIRCUMSTANCES

Article  14,  Paragraph 1.    That advantage be taken by the offender of his public position.

The Public Officer  MUST use the INFLUENCE, prestige of ascendancy,  which his office gives him as the means by which he realizes his purpose.   The Question is:  “Did the accused abuse his office in order to commit the crime?”

Article  14,  paragraph  2:  That the crime be committed in contempt of or with insult to the public authorities.

Requisites:

The public authority is engaged in the discharge of his duties.

He who is thus engaged in the exercise of his functions is NOT  the person against whom the crime is committed;

The offender knows of the identity of the public authority.

The presence had not prevented the offender from committing the criminal act.

AGGRAVATING CIRCUMSTANCE

Article  14,  Paragraph 3:  That the act be committed with insult or in disregard of the respect due to the offended party on account of his rank, age, or sex, or it be committed in the dwelling of the offended party, if the latter has not given provocation.

Insult or disregard of respect on account of:

1.  The rank of the offended party:

                        There must be a difference in the social condition of the offender and the offended party.

2.  The age of the offended party:

            This applies where the victim is of tender age or old age and is not aggravating in Robbery with Homicide or other crimes against property.

3.  Sex:

     This is NOT considered:

            (a)  When the offender acted with passion and obfuscation;

            (b)  When there exists a relationship between the offended party and the offender;

AGGRAVATING CIRCUMSTANCE

DWELLING:   A building or structure  exclusively used for rest and comfort.   A “combination house and store”  or a market stall where the victim slept is NOT a dwelling.   And Dwelling should not be understood in the concept of domicile.

Evidence must clearly show that the defendant entered the house of the deceased to attack him (People vs. Manuel,  29 SCRA 337).

A condition sine qua non is that the offended party “has not given provocation” to the offender.

            Meaning of provocation in the aggravating circumstance of dwelling – The Provocation must be:

1.  Given by the owner of the dwelling;

2.  Sufficient  and

3.  Immediate to the commission of the crime.

AGGRAVATING CIRCUMSTANCE

Article  14,  Paragraph 4: That the act be committed with (1) abuse of confidence or   (2)  obvious ungratefulness.

ABUSE OF CONFIDENCE:   Exists only when the offended party has TRUSTED THE OFFENDER who later abuses such trust by  committing the  crime.   The abuse of confidence must be a means of facilitating the commission of the crime,  the culprit taking advantage of the offended party’s belief that the former would NOT abuse said confidence.

Requisites:

The offended party has trusted the offender.

The offender abused such trust by committing a crime against the offended party.

The abuse of confidence facilitated the commission of the crime.

AGGRAVATING CIRCUMSTANCE

Article  14,  Paragraph 5:  That the crime  be committed in the Palace of the Chief Executive, or in his presence, or where public authorities are engaged in the discharge of their duties, or in a place dedicated to religious worship.

Article  14,  Paragraph 6:    That the crime be committed   (1)  in the nighttime or (2)  in an uninhabited place, or (3)  by a band, whenever such circumstances may facilitate the commission of the offense.

If they concur in one and the same felony,  there is only ONE aggravating circumstance unless the elements are distinctly perceived and can subsist independently,  revealing a greater degree of perversity.

Nighttime,  uninhabited place,  and by a band,  when aggravating:

When it facilitated the commission of the crime;

2. When especially sought for by the offender to insure the commission of the crime or for the purpose of impunity;

3.  When the offender took advantage thereof for the purpose of impunity.

NIGHTTIME:  That period of darkness beginning at the end of dusk and ending at dawn.  Nights are from sunset to sunrise.  (Art. 13, New Civil Code)

AGGRAVATING CIRCUMSTANCE

UNINHABITED PLACE:  One where there are no houses at all, a place at a considerable distance from town,  or where the houses are scattered at a great distance from each other.

BY A BAND:  Whenever  more than three armed malefactors shall have acted together in the commission of an offense, it shall be deemed to have been committed by a band.   If one of the four (4) armed persons is a principal by inducement,  they do not form a band.

AGGRAVATING CIRCUMSTANCE

Article  14,  Paragraph  7:  That the crime be committed on the occasion of a conflagration, shipwreck, earthquake, epidemic, or other calamity or misfortune.

Article  14,  Paragraph 8:  That the crime be committed with the aid of armed men or persons who insure or afford impunity.

Requisites:

Armed men took part in the commission of the crime, directly or indirectly.

The accused availed of their aid or relied upon them when the crime was committed.

AGGRAVATING CIRCUMSTANCE

Article  14,  Paragraph 9:    That the accused is a recidivist.

RECIDIVIST:  One who, at the time of his trial for one crime, shall have been previously convicted by final judgment of another crime embraced in the same title of the  Revised  Penal Code.

Article  14,  Paragraph  10:  That the offender has been previously punished for an offense to which the law attaches an equal or greater penalty or for two or more crimes to which it attaches a lighter penalty.

Requisites of REITERACION or HABITUALITY:

1.  The offender is on trial for an offense;

2.  He previously  served sentence  for another offense to which the law attaches an EQUAL or GREATER  penalty,  or for 2 or more crimes to which it attaches a lighter penalty than that for the new offense.

3.  He is convicted of the new offense.         

AGGRAVATING CIRCUMSTANCE

Article  14,  Paragraph 11:  That the crime be committed in consideration of a price, reward, or promise.

Article 14,  Paragraph 12:  That the crime be committed by means of inundation, fire, poison, explosion, stranding of a vessel or intentional damage thereto, derailment of a locomotive, or by the use of any other artifice involving great waste and ruin.

AGGRAVATING CIRCUMSTANCE

Article  14,  Paragraph 13: That the act be committed with the evident premeditation.

To prove evident premeditation,  the following requisites must be proven:

            1.  The time when the accused determined to commit the crime.

      2.  An act manifestly indicating that the accused has clung to his determination and

      3.  A sufficient lapse of time between such determination and execution, to allow him to reflect upon the consequences of his act and allow his conscience to overcome the resolution of his will.

AGGRAVATING CIRCUMSTANCE

Article  14,  Paragraph 14:  That  (1)  craft,  (2)  fraud, or (3)  disguise be employed.

Article  14,  Paragraph 15:  That advantage be taken of superior strength, or means be employed to weaken the defense.

To take advantage of superior strength means to USE PURPOSELY EXCESSIVE FORCE   out of proportion to the means of defense available to the person attacked.

AGGRAVATING CIRCUMSTANCE

Article  14,   Paragraph 16:  That the act be committed with treachery (alevosia). There is  treachery when the offender commits any of the crimes against the person, employing means, methods or forms in the execution thereof which tend directly and specially to insure its execution, without risk to himself arising from the defense which the offended party might make.

AGGRAVATING CIRCUMSTANCE

Article  14,   Paragraph 17:  That means be employed or circumstances brought about which add ignominy to the natural effects of the act.

IGNOMINY:  Circumstance pertaining to the moral order,  which adds disgrace  and obloquy  to the material injury caused by the crime.

This is applicable to crimes against chastity,  less serious physical injuries,  light or grave coercion,  and murder.

Article  14,  Paragraph 18:    That the crime be committed after an unlawful entry.

UNLAWFUL ENTRY:  When an entrance is effected by a way not intended for the purpose.

AGGRAVATING CIRCUMSTANCE

Article  14,  Paragraph  19:    That as a means to the commission of a crime a wall, roof, floor, door, or window be broken.

Article  14,  Paragraph  20:  That the crime be committed  (1)  with the aid of persons under fifteen years of age, or (2)  by means of motor vehicle, airships, or other similar means.

AGGRAVATING CIRCUMSTANCES

Article  14,  Paragraph 21:  That the wrong done in the commission of the crime be deliberately augmented by causing other wrong not necessary for its commission.

CRUELTY:  When the culprit enjoys and delights in making his victim suffer slowly and gradually,  causing him unnecessary physical pain in the consummation of the criminal act.

ALTERNATIVE CIRCUMSTANCES

            Art.  15:  Alternative Circumstances:  Those which must be taken into consideration as aggravating or mitigating according to the nature and effects of the crime and other conditions attending its commission.

1.  RELATIONSHIP:

This is taken into consideration when the offended party is:

            1. spouse

            2. ascendant

            3. descendant

            4. legitimate/ illegitimate brother or sister

            5.  relative by affinity in the same degree as the offender

ALTERNATIVE CIRCUMSTANCES

2.  INTOXICATION:

It is mitigating (1) if not habitual, or (2) if not subsequent to the plan to commit a felony.

It is aggravating (1) if habitual or (2) intentional.

It is considered intentional if the offender drinks liquor fully knowing its effects, to find in the liquor a stimulant to commit a crime or a means to suffocate any remorse and the habit, however, should be actual and confirmed.

To be entitled to this mitigating circumstance, it must be shown that:

            (a) At the time of the commission of the criminal act,  he has taken such quantity of alcoholic drinks as to blur his reason and deprive him of a certain degree of control and

            (b)Such intoxication is not habitual, nor subsequent to any plan to commit a felony.

ALTERNATIVE CIRCUMSTANCES

            3.  DEGREE OF INSTRUCTION AND EDUCATION OF THE OFFENDER:

A low degree of education or the lack of it is generally mitigating in all crimes EXCEPT:

            1. It is not mitigating in crimes against property, such as Theft, Estafa, Robbery and Arson;

            2. Not mitigating in crimes against Chastity (Adultery);

            3. Not mitigating in Treason as love of country is the natural feeling of every citizen;

            4. Not mitigating in murder.

Art.  17.  PRINCIPALS

Those who take a direct part in the execution of the act;

Those who directly force or induce others to commit it;

3.  Those who cooperate in the commission of the offense by another act without which it would not have been accomplished.

Art.  18.  ACCOMPLICES

            These are persons who, not being included in Art. 17, cooperate in the execution of the offense by previous or simultaneous acts.

QUASI-COLLECTIVE CRIMINAL RESPONSIBILITY:   This comprehends a situation where some are principals while the others are accomplices.

Art.  19.  ACCESSORIES

Accessories are those who,  having knowledge of the commission of the crime, and without having participated therein,  either as principals or accomplices, take part subsequent to its commission in any of the following manners:

1. By profiting themselves or assisting the offender to profit by the effects of the crime;

2. By concealing or destroying the body of the crime or the effects or instruments thereof, in order to prevent its discovery;

3. By harboring, concealing, or assisting in the escape of the principal of the crime, provided the accessory acts with abuse of his public functions or whenever the author of the crime is guilty of treason, parricide, murder, or an attempt to take the life of the Chief Executive, or is known to be habitually guilty of some other crime.