Issuance of fake barangay resolutions = grave misconduct

CASE DIGEST: [G.R. No. 237761, June 11, 2018]. WILFREDO M. CAMUS, BENITO A. CHING, CLARO M. PONCE, ZACARIAS M. FERRER, AND RAMON E. ACUNA V. MAMERTO ANTONIO, BONIFACIO VERSOZA, JR., AND MARICEL RAMIREZ.

As correctly ruled by the CA, the Office of the Ombudsman did not err in finding petitioners liable for Grave Misconduct for having falsified five (5) official documents. Records show that petitioners, taking advantage of their public positions, prepared, signed, and issued five (5) barangay resolutions to make it appear that the Sangguniang Barangay held a session on December 1, 2013 with all its members voting unanimously in favor of the appointment of some barangay personnel, when in fact, it did not.

Case law states that misconduct, which is characterized by a transgression of some established and definite rule of action, more particularly, unlawful behavior or gross negligence by a public officer, is considered grave if it involves additional elements such as willful intent to violate the law or to disregard established rules, as shown in this case.

Besides, the factual findings of the Office of the Ombudsman are conclusive when supported by substantial evidence and are accorded due respect and weight - especially when affirmed by the CA - due to its special knowledge and expertise on matters within its jurisdiction, as in this case.

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