380 PHILIPPINE LAW JOURNAL against the Iatter.v' But the principle of interpreting insurance contracts favorable to the insured is applicable or limited only in cases of doubt, but not when the intention of the policy is clear.22 And where the language is sufficiently clear to convey the meaning of the parties, they shall be enforced in the precise terms in which they are expressed and nothing ought to be imported into the contract by construction contrary thereto.s" Since accident insurance is pre- cisely intended to furnish indemnity against accidents and death caused by accidental means, the language of the policy must be con- strued with reference to that purpose.s+ There can be no doubt, therefore, that under the rules of interpretation and construction of contracts, plaintiff could not recover. Criminal Law-The accused is liable for all consequences of his wrongful act. PEOPLE vs. PIAMONTE, ET AL. G. R. No. L-5775, Jan. 28, 1954 The accused is liable for all direct, natural, and logical conse- quences of his unlawful act.' Under this rule, two situations can be distinguished. First, where the wro.ngful act of the accused ac- celerates, or contributes to, the action of a physical condition of the offended party existing at the time of the commission of such wrong- 21 Young 'Y. Midland Ins. Co., (1915) 30 Phil. 617; Caceres Y. The New India Assurance Co., (CA) 36 OG 3114, cited in Espiritu & Alvendia, Philippine Com- mercial Laws Annotated, p. 409. 22 San Francisco del Monte Pictures Inc., Y. Glen Falls Ins. Co., (1941) 400G 4628. 23 Young and Caceres Cases, supra, note 21. 24 Healy Y. Ace. Ass'n (1890) 25 NE 52, 8 LRA 371. 1 Criminal liability shall be incurred: 1. By any person committing a felony al- though the wrongful act done be different from that which he intended." Art. 4, par. 1, R.P.c. US. Y. Sornito, 4 Phil. 357 (1905); US. 'Y. Navarro, 7 Phil. 713' (1907); US. 'Y.Brobst, 14 Phil. 310 (1'909); U.S. 'Y. Monasterial, 14 Phil. 391 (1909); US. v. Zamora, 32 Phil. 218 (1915); People 'Y. Almonte, 56 Phil. 162 (1935); People 'Y. Cornel, 44 O.G. 3803 (1947); U.S. v. Valdez, 41 Phil. 497 (1921); People 'Y. Cago- co; 58 Phil. 524 (1933); People 'Y. Rellin, 44 O.G. 1820 (1947); People 'Y. Martin, G.R. No. L-3002, May 23, 1951; US. 'Y. Rodriguez, 23 Phil. 22 (1912); os. 'Y. Lu- ciano, 2 Phil. 96, (1903); US. v. Lugo, 8 Phil. 80 (1907); People 'Y. Reyes, 61 Phil. 341 (1935); People v. Genones, 61 Phil. 382 (1935); People 'Y. Ski Bonkia, 60 Phil. 1 (1934); People 'Y. Vagallon, 47 Phil. 332 (1925); People 'Y. Tumo, 47 Phil. 490 (1925); People 'Y. Bindoy, 56 Phil. 15 (1931); People 'Y. Montes, 6 Phil. 443 (1906); V.S. 'Y. Embate, 3 Phil. 640 (1904); US. 'Y. Maysa, 8 Phil. 597 (1908); US. v, Diana, 32 Phil. 344 (1915); Pepole 'Y. Barbano, 76 Phil. 702 (1946); U.S. 'Y. Escalona, 12 Phil. 54 (1908); U.S. 'II. Baoit, 15 Phil. 338 (1910); U.S. 'Y. Gonealee, 4 Phil. 487 (1905); U.S. 'Y. Regis, 2 Phil. 113 (1903); U.S. 'Y. Bertucio, 1 Phil. 47 (1902); U.S. v. Capaducia, 4 Phil. 365 (1905); US. ". Bayutas, 31 Phil. 584 (1931). RECENT DECISIONS 381 ful act, or vice versa, in producing the consequence in question.s Second, where the wrongful act of the accused starts a chain of events culminating in the consequence in question." Such chain of ev.ents may take place because of the lack of medical attendance.s or in spite of its presence," or even because of its presence (that is, medical attendance itself is one of the links in the chain of events) ; 6 these circumstances are immateria1 to the rule." The second situation was present in the case of People v. Pia- monte, et al.8 In that case, the chain of events were as follows: 1) the victim was wounded by the accused ; 2) the victim was oper- ated on to save his life, which operation was a success, but his wounds, as well as the operation, weakened him; 3) his weakened condition caused a disturbance in his intestines; 4) the disturbance in his intestines made it possible for him to contract mucuous colitis, which he in fact contracted; 5) the mucuous colitis caused his death. The Supreme Court held that the act of the accused was the pro- ximate cause of death.s : ,,·;t!:':i~j 2 The physical condition may be a .disease, See People v. Rellin, 44 O.G. 1820 (1947); People ,... Martin, G.R. No. L-3002, May 23, 1951. The wrongful act may accelerate or contribute to, the action of such physical condition in producing the consequence. See US. 'V. Luciano, 2 Phil. 96 (1903); US. 'V. Lugo, 8 Phil. 80 (1907); People 'V. Sia Bonliia, 60 Phil. 1 (1934); People 'V. Tumo, 47 Phil. 470 (1925); People v. Illustre, 54 Phil. 594 (1930); U.S. 'V. Embate, 3 Phil. 640 (1904); US. 'V. Gonzalez, 4 Phil. 487 (1905); People 'V. Rodriguez, 23 Phil. 22 (1912). Conversely, the physical condition may accelerate or contribute to, the action of the wrongful act in producing the consequence. For instance, the victim, being a tuba addict, was of so weak a constitution that his wound did not heal in a lesser number of days. See US. 'V. Bayutas, 31 Phil. 584 (1931). The situation or physical condition of the injured party cannot limit or reduce the degree of evil caused. US. v. S ornito, 4 Phil. 357 (1905); US. v. Capaducia, 4 Phil. 365 (1905). I I 3 U.S. v. Navarro, 7 Phil. 713 (1907); US. v. Brobst, 14 Phil. 310 (1909); People v. Almonte, 56 Phil. 54 (1931); People v, Quiamzon, 62 Phil. 162 (1935); People v. Cornel, 44 O.G. 3803 (1947); People v, Barbano, 76 Phil. 702 (1946); US. 'V. Valdez, 41 Phil. 497 (1921); People v. Cagocco, 58 Phil. 524 (1933); People v. Reyes, 61 Phil. 341 (1935); People v. Genones, 61 Phil. 382 (1935); People v. Turno, 47 Phil. 490 (1925); U.S. v. Montes, 6 Phil. 443 (1906); US. v. Escalona, 12 Phil. 54 (1908); U.S. 'V. Regis, 2 Phil. 113 (1903). ,j, U.S. 'Y. Escalona, 12 Phil. 54 (1908); U.S. v. Baoit, 15 Phil. 338 (1910); US. 'V. Bertucio, 1 Phil. 47 (1901). 5 U.s. 'V. Navarro, 7 Phil. 713 (1907); People v. Almonte, 56 Phil. 54 (1931); People v. Quianzon, 62 Phil. 162 (1915); People v, Genones, 61 Phil. 382 (1935); among others. 6 In People v. Quianson, 62 Phil. 162 (1935), improper treatment of the wounds caused death of the victim. 7 ct. cases cited under footnotes 4, 5, and 6. 8 G.R. No. L.5775, Jan. 28, 1954. 9 Compare the case under comment with the following cases wherein the Supreme Court held that the act of the accused was the proximate cause of death: U.S. Y. Somite, 4 Phil. 357l (1905): The accused gave several blows to the de- ceased. The latter fell to the groOundand was taken to the nearest house and put on 382 l'I'ULrrrINEj LAW JQURNAL The holding of the Supreme Court, taken together with pre- vious decisions, clarifies the extent of the proximate cause rule in criminal law. It appears that, as long as the consequence can be traced through a chain of events from the act of the accused, said accused would be liable for such consequence. Rulings on this point in this jurisdiction seem to point out only two exceptions, namely: 1) where the consequence arose from the fault or carelessness of the assaulted party; 10 and 2) where the consequence arose from in- bed. He was bleeding in the mouth and nose, had a high fever, and was unconcious. He never arose until his death 8 days later. Held: death resulted from the blows. U.S. v. Navarro, 7 Phil. 713 (1907); Death was caused by hemorrhage and ner- vous concussion or condition following the wounding of the victim. U.S.v. Brobst, 14 Phil. 310 (1909): Victim was hit early in the morning and not long afterwards died at the door of his sister's house 200 yards away. People v, Almonte, 56 Phil. 54 (1931: The victim _waswounded and while under- going treatment walked around in his hospital room due to his nervous condition. This caused hemorrhage which in turn caused his death. People v. Quianzon, 62 Phil. 162 (1935): While his wound was being treated, the victim removed the drainage tube due to his nervous condition, which act was con- tributory to his death. Accused held liable for such death. People v. Cornel, 44 O.G. 3803 (1947): The wound of the victim was infected with tetanus from which he died several days later. People v. Barbano, 76 Phil. 702 (1946): The offended party suffered a stab wound involving the heart and left lung, which produced pneumonia, from which he died about a week later. U.S. v. Valdez, 41 Phil. 497 (1921): The accused attacked the deceased while beth were en a boat. The deceased, because of his fright, jumped into the water and drowned. People v. Cagoco, 58 Phil. 524 (1933): The accused hit the deceased, from which blow the deceased fell. The latter's head hit the pavement and he died as a result thereof. U.S. v. Rodriguez, 23 Phil. 22 (1912): The accused struck the victim in the stomach. The victim got up with the help of two witnesses, but had gene only 20 brazos when he again fell down and died. People v. Reyes, 61 Phil. 341 (1935): The victim's wound caused shock, from which he later died. People v. Genones, 61 Phil. 382 (1935): The accused gave the victim a blew en the cheek, as a result of which the latter fell. By r«;asonof the fall, the victim had an abortion accompanied by hemorrhage, from which she died. People v, Sia Bonkia, 60 Phil. 1 (1934): The accused maltreated the victim, as a result ,of which the victim collapsed and died. People v, TUTInO, 47 Phil. 490 (1925): Blows given b~ the accused to the victim caused internal hemorrhage which in turn caused death. U.S. v. Montes, 6 Phil. 443 (1906): The accused struck the victim across the back with some instrument and also kicked him in the abdomen. These blows ruptured the spleenic artery, which caused internal hemorrhage, which in turn caused death. U.S. v. Escalona, 12 Phil. 54 (1908) : The victim was wounded on the wrist. This was fellowed by a fever from which he died 60 days later. U.S. 'Y. Regis, 2 Phil. 113 (1903): The victim's wound weakened him. As a re- sult, he contracted diarrhea from which he later died. 10 U.S. v. Navarro, 7 Phil. 713 (1907), citing the decision of the Supreme Court of Spain of May 30, 1892, excepts consequences which owe their origin to acts or RECENT DECISIONS 383 cidents entirely foreign to the act executed.P The above holding further clarifies the distinction between the proximate cause rule in criminal law and the proximate cause rule in tort law,12 Criminal Law-Nullum crimen, nulla. poena sine lege. PEOPLE v. GARCIA G. R. No. L-5631, April 27, 1954 PEOPLE v. QUE Po LAY G. R. No. L-6791, March 29, 1954 There is no crime committed unless the act is penalized by law prior to its commission.' This was affirmed by the Supreme Court in the cases of People 'v. Garcia 2 and People v. Que Po Lau» In the former case, the defendant was charged with selling tickets for paired-number races (popularly known as "llave") of the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes, allegedly in violation of Act No. 4130 as amended by Com. Act No. 301. The Supreme Court held that tickets for "Have" races of the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes are different malicious omissions imputable to the assaulted party. u.s. v. Monasterial, 14 Phil. 391 (1909), excepts consequences which originate through the fault or carelessness of the injured person, 11 u.S. v. Monasterial, supra, excludes from the rule those consequences which are due to incidents entirely foreign to the act executed. u.S. v. Regis, 2 Phil. 113 (1903), excludes consequences which are due to ex- traneous causes. 12 It is apparent that, outside of the two exceptions mentioned above, the tort law doctrine of "efficient intervening cause" has no application in criminal law, 1 "No felony shall be punishable by any penalty not presscribed by law prior to its commission." Art. 21, RP.C. "Whenever a court has knowledge of any act which it may deem proper to re- press 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." Art. 5, par. 2, RP.C. "Without prejudice to the provisions contained in article 22 of this Code, felonies and misdemeanors, commitred prior to the date of effectiveness of this Code, shall be punished in accordance with the Code or Acts in force at the time of their commission." Art. 366, RP.C. Offenses which constitute a sin against morality but which are not crimes under sanction of criminal law are not punishable. People v, de la Cruz, 48 Phil. 533 (1925). It is an elementary rule in penal law that no one should be punished for the commission or omission of an act not prohibited by law and for which no penalty has been established. U.s. v. Olsen, 36 Phil. 395 (1917). See also: U.S. v. Caballeros, 4 Phil. 350 (1905): Manila Electric Company v. Halili, 57 Phil. 795 (1933); People 'V. Rivera, 58 Phil. 933 (Unpublished Decision) (1933); U.S. v. Macasaet, 11 Phil. 447 (1908); U.S. v. Cuna, 12 Phil. 241 (1908); U.S. v. Yam Tung Way, 21 Phil. 67 (1911); U.S. v. Tldylor, 28 Phil. 599 (1914); People v. Moran, 44 Phil. 387 (1923); People Y. Carballo, 62 Phil. 651 (1935). 2 G.R No. L-5631, April 27, 1954. 3 G.R No. L-6791, March 29, 1954. 384 PHILIPPINE LAW ,TOURNAI.. from tickets issued by said corporation. N or are they tickets not issued by it which represent, or tend to represent, an interest in tickets issued by said corporation. Since the law relied upon does not include "Have" tickets, and there being no other statute penaliz- ing the act of the defendant, the case consequently was dismissed. In the latter case, the defendant was charged with violating Circular No. 20 of the Central Bank of the Philippines. This cir- cular requires possessors of foreign exchange consisting of U.S. dollars to sell the same to the Central Bank within one day follow- ing the receipt of such foreign exchange. The defendant relied upon the theory that since said Circular No. 20 was not published in the Official Gazette prior to the omission in question, said circular had no force and effect. The Supreme Court sustained the defendant, and held that said Circular No. 20, having been issued for the im- plementation of the law authorizing its issuance, took effect, ac- cording to settled jurisprudence, on the fifteenth day after the com- pletion of its publication in the Official Gazette» Therefore in the eyes of the law, there was no such circular violated, and the defen- dant committed no offense." Criminal Law-Circumstances affecting criminal liability. PEOPLE v. MAURILLO G. R. No. L-6480, April 12, 1954 PEOPLE v. ALUNDAY, ET AI... G. R. Nos. L-6021-6022, April 12, 1954 PEOPLE V. LAGAY, ET AL. G. R. No. L-5112, May 14, 1954 PEOPLE v. FRANCISCO G. R. No. L-5900, May 14, 1954 PBOPLE v. MANANTAN G. R. No. L-5547, April 29, 1954 PEOPLE v. LOSEOand RAMOS G. R. Nos. L-5508-5509, April 29, 1954. Although the circumstances which affect criminal liability may be confined within the provisions of the Revised Penal Code on jus- tifving, exempting, mitigating, aggravating and alternative circum- stances/ the facts which may fit into those provisions are so varied that the Supreme Court is never in want of a case which presents the challenging question as to whether one or the other circumstance attended the commission of the crime. In the case of People v. Maurillo,z the accused attempted to prove that the deceased struck him with a pestle, but having dodged ·1 "Laws take effect after fifteen days following the completion of their publication in the Official Gazette, unless it is otherwise provided." Art. 2, Civil Code. S "Acts and omissions punishable by law are felonies." Art. 3, R.P.C.. Hence the third element of a felony is that the act or omission must be punishable by law. See A PADILLA, CRIMINALLAW (1953), 25. This requisite is ascribed to the old maxim "nullum crimen, nulla poena sine lege". Guevarra, Commentaries on the Revised Penal Code (1931) 9. 1 Articles 16-17, respectively. 2 G.R. No. L-6480, April 12, 1954. RECENT DECISIONS 385 the blow, he thereupon got his bolo and hacked his assailant to death. Was there self-defense'? The Supreme Court held that there was none. It was improbable," according to the Court, for the accused to have dodged the mow because the accused himself testified that the deceased struck without warning and while he was standing at close range." In the case of People v. Alundsu), et al.,5 the accused, charged with robbery in band with homicide, alleged that. they were made to join the band by force." The prosecution contended that their claim should be discredited because: 1) they could have easily es- caped; 2) they received 'P10 each as their share of the loot; and 3) the other members of the band would not have taken them along in the commission of the crime in question, for said members of the band would not have had any confidence in them. The Supreme Court rejected this contention, holding that: 1) it was not shown how the accused could have escaped; 7 2) the receipt of 'P10 each 8 3 In pleading self-defense, the defendant, having admitted the authorship of the death 'of the deceased, must, in order to avoid criminal liability, prove the justifying circumstance claimed by him, by clear and convincing evidence. People v. Tolentino, 54 Phil. 77 (1929); People v, Apolinario, 53 Phil. 586 (1933); People v. Gimena, 59 Phil. 509 (1934); People v. Ansayon, 75 Phil. 772 (1946); People v. Bauden, 43 O.G. 2020 (1946); People v. Berio, 59 Phil. 533 (1934); People v. Barbano, 76 Phil. 702 (1946) . 4 In the case .of People Y. Ramos, G.R. No. L-5843, May 17, 1954, the Supreme Court held the claim of self-defense to be improbable because it was proved that the deceased was unarmed when the accused attacked him. See also U.S. v. Carrero, 9 Phil. 544 (1908); People v. Minda, G.R. No. L-4212, March 27, 1952. In the case of People v, Dado, G.R. No. L-5774, March 22, 1954, the defendant claimed that the deceased approached him and gave him a fist blow on the belly. The deceased then pulled something from his undershirt, which the accused believed to be a revolver, and while the deceased thus held the revolver and pointed it at the accused, the latter held the former's hand with his left, and with the right pulled out a balisong with which he stabbed the deceased. This theory was rejected by the Supreme Court as inherently improbable, for it would have been impossible for the defendant to have opened the balisong with one hand as he held the deceased with the other. Moreover, not only was there no evidence that the deceased was holding) a revolver, but there was also lack of motive on his part to attack the accused. For other cases where the theory of self-defense was discredited for improbability, see People Y. Neddo, G.R. No. L-5880, April 29, 1953 and People v. Gammac, G.R. No. L-5197, Aug. 28, 1953, commented on in Survey of Criminal Law-1953, by Luis R. Mauricio, XXIX Phil. Law Journal 61, 65; see also People v. Minda, G.R. No. L- 4212, March 27, 1952, commented on in Criminal Law-1952, by Rafael Hernaez and Ponciano Mathay, XXVIII Phil. Law Journal 41, 46. 5 G.R. No. L·6021-6022, April 12, 1954. ~ The defense invoked compulsion of an irresistible force. Art. 12, par. 5, R.P.c. 7 Not taking advantage of an opportunity to es.capewould negate compulsion of an irresistible force. People v. Tan, G.R. No. L-2096, February 6, 1951; People v. Raga- nit, G.R. No. L-2174, April 18, 1951. 8 Sharing in the loot may also show conspiracy. See People v, San Luis, G.R. No. L-2365, May 29, 1954. 386 PHILIPPINE LAW JOURNAL out of the large loot showed how insignificant was their role in the band, and besides, they could not have refused to receive it; and 3) the members of the band would not have cared what sort of per- sons served them; being instruments of terror, they would not have hesitated to us any person, confident that there would be no resis- tance.? Where the accused gave himself up and turned in his weapon only after a police officer had intervened and ordered him to stop, should the mitigating circumstance of voluntary surrender be con- sidered in his favor? The Supreme Court, in the case of People v. Ramos,10 held that it should not be considered as such. This is ne- cessarily so because voluntary surrender must be spontaneous 11 and will not be taken into consideration if the defendant was in fact arrested.'> The aggravating circumstance of dwelling is one of those cir- cumstances into which a great variety of facts may fit in.13 Thus 9 Passing upon a similar case, the Supreme Court upheld the defense or irresistible force where the source of the force, the Hukbalahaps, "were ruthless killers or execu- tioners and were in a mood to inflict extreme and summary punishment for disobed- ience to their command," and where "the place was isolated, escape was at least risky, and protection by lawfully constituted authorities was out of reach." People v. Regala, G.R. No. L-1751, May 28, 1951. See also People v. Godinez, 45 O.G. 2524 (1947); People v. Bagalawis, 44 O.G. 2590 (1949). On the other hand, the Supreme Court, in the case of People v. Manza.nida, G.R. No. L-5706, Jan. 29, 1954, found from the proven circumstances that there was no irresistible force. The accused was charged with treason for serving as a Japanese spy. He argued that he was himself a prisoner of the Japanese and was taken along with them as servant, cook and "cargador". The Court answered this by saying that "* * * it was not likely that Japanese patrols, needing every soldier to capture and even fight guerillas, would be taking along with them prisoners suspected of being guerillas themselves, because in that case, such prisoners would only be a liability instead of an asset, necessitating an extra soldier or soldiers to guard them, including space at the motor vehicle when used by the patrol to go to distant places." See also People v. Moreno, 43 O.G. 4644 (1946); People v. Munoz, 45 O.G. 2471 (1947); People v. Ponce, G.R. No. L-5706, Jan. 29, 1954. 10 G.R. No. L-5843, May 17, 1954. 11 People v, Timbol, G.R. Nos. L-47471-47472, August 4, 1944; People Y. Coney, G.R. No. L-4224, Dec. 28, 1951. "Voluntary surrender is not available as a mitigating factor where it does not ap- pear that it was the offender's own idea to send for a police to give himself up. This ruling seems to be unduly harsh. Why should it make a difference who originally con- ceived of the surrender, so long as the offender actually gave himself up before arrest? The law requires that the surrender be voluntary and not the result of capture or arrest. It is not necessary-it would be unrealistic to require-that it be spontaneous. Assum- ing that voluntary surrender, like plea of guilty, is mitigating because it indicates re- pentance, still repentance loses none of its moral and physical force because it was first suggested by another." Criminal Law: Criminal Liability and Specific Crimes, By Florentino Feliciano and Antonio Ceniza, XXVII Phil. Law Journal 277, 288. 12 People Y. Conwi, 71 Phil. 595 (1941). 13 Insofar as the aggravating circumstance of dwelling (Art. 14, par. 3, R.P.c.) is concerned, the problem seems to divide itself into only three main questions. First, there is the question as to whether a specific spot mayor may not be considered part RECENT DECISIONS 387 in the case of People v. Lagay, et al.,14 one victim was attacked in- side the house, but having fled, was pursued and finally killed out- side the house.P In the case of People v. FramciecoJ» the accused threw a lighted stick of dynamite inside the house of his victim.!? In both cases, the Supreme Court held that the aggravating circum- stance of dwelling should be considered. The same may be said of the aggravating circumstance of trea- chery.t" Thus, where about eighty armed persons ambushed a group of the dwelling. Second, assuming that a specific spot may be considered part of the dwelling, will the aggravating circumstance of dwelling be taken into consideration if only one phase of the criminal act took place therein? Third, there is the question as to whether the aggravating circumstance of dwelling may be considered at all with respect to certain crimes. In the case of People 'V. Open a, et al., G.R Nos. L.6318-6319, May 17, 1954, which was a case of rohbery with rape, and People 'Y. Fader, G.R No. L. 5732, March 12, 1954, which was the case of robbery with homicide, the Supreme Court took into consideration the aggravating circumstance of dwelling. Dwelling may not be con- sidered in robbery in an inhabited house which is the dwelling of the offended party, because this circumstance is inherent in the crime of robbery committed in an inhabited house. u.s. 'Y. Cas, 14 Phil. 21, 22 (1909). However, when the robbery is one which may be committed inside as well as outside the house, dwelling wi!! be considered, be- cause the circumstance of dwelling "no es inherente al delito generico de robo, ya que cabe que se cometa un robo con violencia e intimidacion en una persona fuera de la habitacion 0 morada de esta." Decision of the Supreme Court of Spain of Decem- ber 16, 1871. See 2 Viada 331, Question 36, et seq. But it must be borne in mind that for dwelling to be, aggravating, it must be specially sought. People 'Y. Guhiting, G.R. L-2843, May 14, 19;>1;People 'Y. Mendoza, G.R Nos. L-4146AI47, March 28, 1952. Dwelling was considered in robbery: People 'Y. Dayego, G.R No. L.2247, May 10, 1950; People 'Y. Francisco, G.R. No. L.2748, May 10 1950; People 'Y. Ferrer, GR. No. L.4840, Jan. 20, 1953. 14- G.R. No. L.5112, May 14, 1954. 15 Dwelling was considered where he attack began inside the house and. after the accused subdued his victim, the former took the latter outside the house for the pur- pose of killing him. U.S. 'Y. Lastimosa, 27 Phil. 432 (1914). However, where the attack began outside the house, and when the victim fled to his house, was pursued and killed therein, the Supreme Court held that dwelling should not be aggravating on the ground that it was not specially sought. People 'Y. Mendoza, GR Nos. L-4146-4147, March 28, 1952. 16 G.R. No. L.5900, May 14, 1954. 17 Dwelling was considered where the accused shot from under the house. People 'Y. Bautista, 45 O.G. 2084 (1947); U.S. 'Y. Macarinfas, 40 Phil. 1 (1919).. It was likewise considered where the accused shot at the house. People 'Y. Cael, G.R. Nos. L-2961-2964, Jan. 31, 1951. 18 In PBople 'Y. Dado, GR. No. L-5774, March 22, 1954, where the attack was preceded by a fight, the Supreme Court held that there was no treachery. But in the case of People 'Y. Maurillo, GR. No. L-6480, April 12, 1954, where the attack was sudden; People 'Y. Escares and Macalalad, G.R. No. L. 5562, April 29, 1954, where the accused struck the victim from behind with a cane and after the latter was down, shot and stabbed him; People 'Y. Unciamo, et al., G.R. No. L-6643, April 29, 1954, 388 PHILIPPINE LAW JOURNAL of cars, "without any danger to themselves, because they were en- trenched in strategic places on both sides of the road," the Supreme Court, in People v. Mamantams» held that there was treachery.w In the case of People v. Ramos a,nd Loeeo=» the Supreme Court held that the aggravating circumstance of enseiuumiento ought not to be considered because Amparo, one of the victims, was not raped in the presence of her huaband.s- where the deceased was attacked by one defendant while the former's arms were held apart by the other two defendants, the Supreme Court held there was treachery. There was no treachery where the victim has a chance to prepare. People 'Y. Visa- gar, G.R. No. L-3384, June 12, 1953. As when the attack was preceded by a heated discussion or a quarrel. People v. Gonzalez, 76 Phil. 473 (1946); U.S. v. Indica, 3 Phil. 313 (1904). Sudden attack generally constitutes treachery. U.S. ". Cabiling, 7 Phil. 469 (1907); U.S. v. Cornelio, 28 Phil. 457 (1914); People 'Y. Pengzon, 44 Phil. 224 (1922); People v. Noble, 48 O.G. 2010, (1946); People v. Limaco, G.R. No. L-3090, Jan. 9, 1951; Feople v. Sy Pio. G.R. Nos. L-3827-3828, Nov. 23, 1951; People v. Agui- lar, G.R. Nos. L-3248-3249, May 16, 1951; People ". Cael, G.R. Nos. L-2961-2964, Jan. 31, 1951; People 'Y. Irinco G.R. No. L-3479, July 30, 1951; People ". Holleros; G.R. No. L-3384, Feb. 14, 1951; People v. Malibiran, G.R. No. L-4192, Dec. 27, 1951; People v. T'amiana, G.R. No. L-3628, Sept. 29, 1951; People 'Y. Garciola, G.R. No. L-4015, Oct. 30, 1951, People ". Felipe, G.R. L-4619 Feb. 25, 1952; People ". Avila, G.R. No. L-4640, March 23, 1953; People' 'Y. Almazan, G.R. No. L-4447, April 18, 1952; People v. Casas, G.R. No. L-5873, March 31, 1953; People ". Dosal, G.R. Nos. L-4215-4216, April 17, 1953. Likewise, an attack from behind is usually considered tteacherous. People ". Yvdoon, 46 O.G. 1003 (1948); People ". Cagoco, 58 Phil. 524 (1933); People 'Y. Sablan, 46 O.G. S. 11,83 (1949); People 'Y. Ambis, 68 Phil. 635 (1939); People 'Y. Acopio, 58 Phil. 582 (1933»; People v. Mablon, G.R. No. L-5198, April 17, 1953; People 'Y. Torrecampo, G.R. No. L-5761, Sept. 7, 1953. There is also treachery where the victim is bound. U.S. v, De Leon, 1 Phil. 163 (1902); u.s. V. Lastimosa, 27 Phil. 432 (1914); People 'Y. Madrid, G.R. No. L- 3032, Jan. 3, 1951. Likewise where the victim has his arms upraised. People ". Lasafin, G.R. No. L-5874, Feb. 11, 1953. Or where the victim has his arms pinned down. People v, Ascares, G.R. No. L-3527, Aug. 30, 1951. 19 G.R. No. L-5547, April 29, 1954. 20 There is treachery where the victim is not aware of the presence of armed men who had come to kill him. People v. Baysa, G.R. No. L-5190-3, April 29,. 1953. See XXIX Phil. Law Journal 64. So is there treachery where the accused was so situated as to incur no risk. People 'Y. Chan, G.R. No. L-4014, Sept. 11, 1951. Possibility of risk on the part of the accused which might arise from the victim's defense appears to be controlling. See Art. 14, par. 16, R.P.c. See also Criminal Law: Criminal Liability and Specific Crimes, by Florentino Feliciano and Antonio Ceniza, XXVII Phil. Law Journal 277, 280-281. 21 G.R. Nos. L-5508-5509, April 29, 1954. 22 In U.S.v. Iglesia and Valdez, '21 Phil. 55 (1911), the wife was raped in front of her husband. Here the circumstance was held to be ignominia and not enseiiamiento. C See PADILLA, RIMINAL LAW, 1953 ed., p. 233. RECENT DECISIONS 389 Criminal Law-F1"USbration in murder and homicide cases as dis- tinguished from attempt. PEOPLE v. SY PIO G.R. No. L-5848, April 30, 1954 In the above case, the Supreme Court, citing the cases of U.S. '(,'.EJduave,l People v. Dagman,2 and People v. Borinaga, 3 held that, for a frustrated murder or homicide to exist, it is not necessary that the accused actually commit all the acts of execution necessary to produce the death of his victim. It is sufficient that he believed he had committed all said acts. It is enough that the subjective phase of the acts necessary to commit the offense had passed, and that there was a full and complete belief on the part of the assailant that he had committed all acts of execution necessary to produce the death of the intended victim. The Court, speaking through Justice Alejo Labrador, distinguished the above cited cases from the case at bar: "In the case at bar, however, the defendant appellant fired at his vic- tim, and the latter was hit, but he was able to escape and hide in another room. The fact that he was able to escape, which the appellant must have seen, must have produced in the mind of defendant that he was not able to hit his victim at a vital part of the body. In other words, the defendant knew that he had not actually performed all the acts of execu- tion necessary to kill his victim. Under these circumstances it cannot be said that the subjective phase of the acts of execution had been completed. As it does not appear that the defendant appellant continued in pursuit, and as a matter of fact he ran away afterwards, a reasonable doubt exists in our mind that the defendant had committed all the acts of exe- cution or passed the subjective phase of said acts. This doubt must be resolved in favor of the defendant." The rulings in this jurisdiction on frustrated murder or homi- cide seem to recognize three phases in the consummation of said crimes, namely: (first) an act or acts sufficient in the natural course of events (second) to produce a wound or injury or wounds or in- juries sufficient in the natural course of events (third) to produce death. The consummation of the crime of murder or homicide may be interrupted between the second and third phases. That is, the wound or injury or wounds or injuries, though sufficient in the natural course of events to produce death, do not in fact cause death "by reason of causes independent of the will of the perpetrator." 4 The 136 Phil. 209 (1917). 247 Phil. 768 (1925). Z 47 Phil. 768 (1925). 355 Phil. 433 (1930). 4 A felony 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." Art. 6, par. 2, R. P. C. 390 fHILIPPINE LAW JOURNAL intervention under this circumstance usually consists in timely and skillful medical treatment,> though perhaps an extraordinarily strong physical constitution of the victim may also serve the same purpose. When the crime is thus interrupted between the seco.nd and third phases, it is considered as frustrated." The consummation of the crime of murder or homicide may also be interrupted between the first and second phases. That is, the act or acts, though sufficient in the natural course of events to pro- duce a wound or injury or wounds or injuries (sufficient in the na- tural course of events to produce death), do not in fact produce such wound or injury or wounds or injuries "by reason of causes inde- pendent of the will of the perpetrator." 7 The intervention u.nder this circumstance may be varied. For instance, the back of a chair on which the victim was sitting," or the rib of the victim himself 9 may constitute the obstruction. When the crime is thus interrupted between the first and second phases, it is also considered as frus- trated.10 5 U.S. v. Eduave, 36 Phil. 209 (1917); People v. Pacis, 48 Phil. 190 (1925); Peo- ple v. David, 60 Phil. 93 (1934); People v, Hamada, 62 PhiL 112 (1935); People v. Mabug-at, 51 Phil. 967 (1926). 6 The accused did all that was necessary to commit the crime. If the crime did not result as a consequence, it was due to something 'beyond his control. U.S. v. Eduave, 36 Phil. 209 (1917). Where the accused inflicted treacherously serious wounds upon the victim, the the crime committed was frustrated murder. People v. Pacis, 48 Phil. 190 (1925). The defendant, in fIring his revolver at the offended party, hitting him on the upper left hand part of the body, piercing it from side to side and perforating the lung, performed all the acts of execution which should have produced his death but did not produce it by reason of the adequate and timely intervention of medical science, a cause entirely independent of the defendant's will. Such proven facts constitute the crime of frustrated homicide. People v. David, 60 Phil. 93 (1934). It was only the prompt and skillful medical treatment which the offended party received that saved his life. The offense committed was therefore frustrated murder. People v. Honrada, 62 Phil. 112 (1935). The victim was wounded by a shot, the bullet: passing through the neck, having entered the posterior region thereof coming out through the lefr, eye, which was com- pletely destroyed. Due to proper medical attention, the victim did not die. The crime was frustrated murder, the accused having performed all the acts of execution which would have produced the crime as a consequence but which, nevertheless, did not pro- duce it by reason of causes independent of his will. People v. Mabug-a«, 51 Phil. 967 (1926). See People v. Yabot, 45 Phil. 4 (1923): The fact that the victim recovered through medical treatment does not make the crime either frustrated homicide or murder. 7 Supra, note 5. 8 People v, Borinaga, 55 Phil. 433 (1930). 1) People v. Reyes, 47 Phil. 635 (1925). 10 Where the accused has attacked the offended party unexpectedly, and the wounds inflicted by him upon the latter would have caused death had not the weapon whereby the same were inflicted met with an obstacle, such as the ribs, which prevented its penetration the lungs and kidneys, the defendant is guilty of frustrated murder. People "Y. Reyes, 47 Phil. 635 (1925). RECENT DECISIONS 391 The execution of the crime of murder or homicide may also be interrupted during the first phase. That is, the interruption takes place before the act or acts are sufficient in the natural course of events to produce a wound or injury or wounds or injuries (suffi- cient in the natural course of events to produce death). The in- tervention under this circumstance may also be varied; and it is the nature of the intervention that appears to be determinative of the stage of execution of the crime. If the accu sed does not complete his act or acts, that is, he does not go so far as to make his act or acts sufficient in the natural course of events to produce wounds sufficient in the natural course of events to produce death, because of his belief that his victim is already dead or would undoubtedly die, the crime is still considered as frustrated.P However, if the factor which intervenes is something other than such belief, the crime would then be considered as attempted ;12 except, when such intervening factor is the accused's "own spontaneous desistance," in which case there would not even be an attempt.P Where the knife of the defendant was aimed at a vital part of the body, but met with an obstruction, such as the back .of the chair on which the victim was sitting, the crime was held to be frustrated murder. People ')I. Boringa, 55 Phil. 433 (1930). Note that under this circumstance, belief of the accused that the victim is already dead or would undoubtedly die, appears to be immaterial. Thus in the Borinagd case, " * * * After the attack, Borinaga was also heard to say that he did not hit the back of the chair. But Borinaga was persistent in his endeavor, and hardly ten minutes after the first attack, he returned, knife in hand, to renew it, but was unable to do so because Mooney and Perpetua were then on their guard and turned a flashlight on Borinaga, frightening him away. * * *." 11 "In frustrated murder the accused performs all of the acts which he belives ne- cessary to consummate the crime. '" * '" In the case at bar * '" * the defendant be- lieved that he had performed all the acts necessary to consummate the crime ,of mur- der." This surely stamps the crime as frustrated murder. U.S. ')I. Lim San, 17 Phil. 273 (1910). Where the victim escaped further wounds by playing possum, the crime was held to be frustrated murder. People ')I. Dagnaa, 47 Phil. 768 (1925). Where the victim's "assailants left him lying on the ground believing that he was dead, and it is not shown that death result-ed from the injuries, there being on the contrary, evidence that he returned home on the following day, the crime should be qualified as frustrated murder." U ..S ')I. Bastas, 5 Phil. 251 (1905). Where the accused only refrained from further attack when he believed that his victim was dead, the crime was held to be frustrated murder. U.S. 'Y. Poblete, 10 Phil. 578 (1908). "After the assault, the two defendants, believing that their victim was dead, took him out of the town and left him in a ditch. Next morning, the victim regained conciousness although he was unable to rerum to his house because of his weakness." The crime was frustrated murder. u.s. ')I. Domingo, 18 Phil. 250 (1911). 12 "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 * * *." Art. 6, par. 2, R.P.c. 13 There would be no attempt if the offender does not perform all the acts of extension which should produce the felony by reason of "his own spontaneous disist- an.ce." See Art. 6, par. 3, R.P.c. If the offender thru fear or remorse desists from continuing his criminal purpose, there would be no attempt. This is a sort of reward 392 PHILIPPINE LAW JOURNAL As to where the factor of poor aim in firing a gun would fit in, by the use of the formula stated above, is a ticklish problem. Poor aim cannot be deemed as an interve.ning factor similar to those men- tioned above. When the accused is interrupted after firing a poorly aimed shot, his act cannot he said to be sufficient in the natural course of events to produce a wound or injury which in the natural course of -events would be sufficient to cause death. The crime com- mitted under such circumstances would, therefore, depend upon the nature of the intervention. If after firing a poorly aimed shot the accused does not continue firing because he believes that his victim is already dead or would undoubtedly die, the crime would be frus- trated murder or homicide, as the case may be. But if the interven- ing factor is something other than such belief, the crime would be attempted murder or homicide. If the intervening factor is the ac- cused's "own spontaneous desistance," the crime would not be at- tempted murder or homicide, but physical injuries in the proper degree.t- In the case under comment, the Supreme Court observed that the fact that the victim was able to escape and hide in another room, which the accused must have seen, must have produced in the lat- ter's mind the belief that he was not able to hit his victim in a vital part of the body, and, therefore, ruled that the crime committed is attempted and not frustrated murder. However, the Court also stated that the defendant did not continue in pursuit, but as a matter of fact ran away afterwards. Would not these facts constitute "spontaneous desistance" and therefore negate an attempt? Labor Law-A superintendent performing managerial functions is also an employee. CEBU PORTLAND CEMENT CO. v. CIR AND PLASMU G.R. No. L-6158, March 11, 1954. Before the Court of Industrial Relations may take cognizance of any industrial dispute it is necessary that the relationship of em- granted by law to those who, having one foot on the verge of crime, heed the call of their conscience and retum to the parh of righteousness. See GUEVARRA, COMMEN- TARIES ON THE REVISED PENAL CODE 16 (1931). 14 See, however, U.S. '1'. Agoncillo, 33 Phil. 242 (1916), where the Supreme Court appears to have regarded the poor aim of the accused, or as the Court termed it, the good luck of the victim, as an intervening factor which prevented a sufficient act from, producing a wound which in the natural course of events would produce death. In this case the accused fired four successive shots at close range, but only the second shot hit the victim on the thigh. The Supreme Court stated that, "* ** if he did not succeed in carrying out his vicious intent to kill * ** notwithstanding that he performed all the acts conducive thereto and which should have resulted in the death of the assaulted man, the failure was due to the chance that three of the rfour shots fired at close range perhaps missed their mark, and to the victim's good luck, all reasons independent of the will of the aggressor," and held that the crime was frustrated murder.
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