Criminal law exam predictions

Here are 24 pointers to review for your examination in Criminal Law 2 (Book 2) or Criminal Law Review. Criminal law is the body of law that relates to crime. It proscribes conduct perceived as threatening, harmful, or otherwise endangering to the property, health, safety, and moral welfare of people inclusive of one's self.

[1] Crimes against National Security.

The following are Crimes against National Security: [a] Treason; [b] Misprision of Treason; [c] Conspiracy and Proposal to Commit Treason; and [d] Espionage.

[2] Circumstances Qualifying Piracy.

The elements of Piracy are:

[a] The vessel is on the high seas or Philippine waters;
[b] Offenders may or may not be members of its complement, or passengers of the vessel;
[c] Offenders either [i] attack or seize the vessel; or [ii] seize the whole or part of its cargo, its equipment, or personal belongings of its crew or passengers 

Piracy is qualified if the preceding were committed under any of the following circumstances:

[a] Whenever they have seized a vessel by boarding or firing upon the same;
[b] Whenever the pirates have abandoned their victims without means of saving themselves; or
[c] Whenever the crime is accompanied by murder, homicide, physical injuries or rape. (Article 123 of the Revised Penal Code)

[3] Distinctions among and between Robbery, Theft and Estafa.

Robbery, Theft and Estafa are crimes against property but they different in that:

[a] Robbery requires violence against or intimidation of persons or force upon things. Theft requires merely taking within the owner's consent.
[b] In Robbery, the offender takes possession away from the owner or possessor. In Estafa, the offender receives the property from owner before the crime. The same is also true for Theft.
[c] The criminal intent in Robbery and Theft is to take away property and to gain from it. In Estafa, it is to defraud another, thereby causing pecuniary damage.

[4] The Requirement of Asportation in Theft.

The only requirement for a personal property to be the object of theft under the penal code is that it be capable of appropriation. It need not be capable of "asportation," which is defined as "carrying away." Jurisprudence is settled that to "take" under the theft provision of the penal code does not require asportation or carrying away.

To appropriate means to deprive the lawful owner of the thing. The word "take" in the Revised Penal Code includes any act intended to transfer possession which may be committed through the use of the offenders' own hands, as well as any mechanical device. (G.R. No. 182648. June 17, 2015)

[5] Differences between Arbitrary Detention and Illegal Detention.

Arbitrary Detention is a crime against the Fundamental Law of the State while Illegal Detention is a crime against personal liberty and security.

In Arbitrary Detention, the offender is any public officer or employee with arresting powers. In Illegal Detention, the offender is any private individual.

[6] Maximum Period of Detention.

The penalties provided in the next preceding article shall be imposed upon the public officer or employee who shall detain any person for some legal ground and shall fail to deliver such person to the proper judicial authorities within the period of; twelve (12) hours, for crimes or offenses punishable by light penalties, or their equivalent; eighteen (18) hours, for crimes or offenses punishable by correctional penalties, or their equivalent and thirty-six (36) hours, for crimes, or offenses punishable by afflictive or capital penalties, or their equivalent. In every case, the person detained shall be informed of the cause of his detention and shall be allowed upon his request, to communicate and confer at any time with his attorney or counsel. (Article 125 of the Revised Penal Code)

[7] Malicious Mischief.

Any person who shall deliberately cause the property of another any damage not falling within the terms of the next preceding chapter shall be guilty of malicious mischief. (Article 327 of the Revised Penal Code)

[8] Arson.

The penalty of reclusion temporal in its maximum period to reclusion perpetua shall be imposed upon any person who shall burn: 1. Any arsenal, shipyard, storehouse or military powder or fireworks factory, ordinance, storehouse, archives or general museum of the Government. 2. Any passenger train or motor vehicle in motion or vessel out of port. 3. In an inhabited place, any storehouse or factory of inflammable or explosive materials. (Article 320 of the Revised Penal Code)

[9] Circumstances Qualifying Killing to Murder.

Any person who, not falling within the provisions of Article 246 shall kill another, shall be guilty of murder and shall be punished by reclusion temporal in its maximum period to death, if committed with any of the following attendant circumstances: 1. With treachery, taking advantage of superior strength, with the aid of armed men, or employing means to weaken the defense or of means or persons to insure or afford impunity. 2. In consideration of a price, reward, or promise. 3. By means of inundation, fire, poison, explosion, shipwreck, stranding of a vessel, derailment or assault upon a street car or locomotive, fall of an airship, by means of motor vehicles, or with the use of any other means involving great waste and ruin. 4. On occasion of any of the calamities enumerated in the preceding paragraph, or of an earthquake, eruption of a volcano, destructive cyclone, epidemic or other public calamity. 5. With evident premeditation. 6. With cruelty, by deliberately and inhumanly augmenting the suffering of the victim, or outraging or scoffing at his person or corpse. (Article 248 of the Revised Penal Code)

[10] Death under Exceptional Circumstances; Reasonable Time.

Any legally married person who having surprised his spouse in the act of committing sexual intercourse with another person, shall kill any of them or both of them in the act or immediately thereafter, or shall inflict upon them any serious physical injury, shall suffer the penalty of destierro. If he shall inflict upon them physical injuries of any other kind, he shall be exempt from punishment. These rules shall be applicable, under the same circumstances, to parents with respect to their daughters under eighteen years of age, and their seducer, while the daughters are living with their parents. Any person who shall promote or facilitate the prostitution of his wife or daughter, or shall otherwise have consented to the infidelity of the other spouse shall not be entitled to the benefits of this article. (Article 247 of the Revised Penal Code)

[11] Estafa; Bouncing Checks; Double Jeopardy.

While the filing of the two sets of Information under the provisions of Batas Pambansa Bilang 22 and under the provisions of the Revised Penal Code, as amended, on estafa, may refer to identical acts committed by the petitioner, the prosecution thereof cannot be limited to one offense, because a single criminal act may give rise to a multiplicity of offenses and where there is variance or differences between the elements of an offense in one law and another law as in the case at bar there will be no double jeopardy because what the rule on double jeopardy prohibits refers to identity of elements in the two (2) offenses. Otherwise stated, prosecution for the same act is not prohibited. What is forbidden is prosecution for the same offense. Hence, the mere filing of the two (2) sets of information does not itself give rise to double jeopardy. (People v. Miraflores, cited in G.R. Nos. 101127-31 November 18, 1993)

[12] Issuer's Liability under BP 22.

To be liable for violation of B.P. 22, the following essential elements must be present: (1) the making, drawing, and issuance of any check to apply for account or for value; (2) the knowledge of the maker, drawer, or issuer that at the time of issue he does not have sufficient funds in or credit with the drawee bank for the payment of the check in full upon its presentment; and (3) the subsequent dishonor of the check by the drawee bank for insufficiency of funds or creditor dishonor for the same reason had not the drawer, without any valid cause, ordered the bank to stop payment. (G.R. No. 187401. September 17, 2014) Therefore, it is the issuer who is punished by law.

[13] General Elements of Estafa.

The elements of estafa in general are the following: (a) that an accused defrauded another by abuse of confidence, or by means of deceit; and (b) that damage and prejudice capable of pecuniary estimation is caused the offended party or third person. (G.R. No. 199907)

[14] Perjury; Elements.

The elements of perjury under Article 183 are: (a) That the accused made a statement under oath or executed an affidavit upon a material matter. (b) That the statement or affidavit was made before a competent officer, authorized to receive and administer oath. (c) That in the statement or affidavit, the accused made a willful and deliberate assertion of a falsehood. (d) That the sworn statement or affidavit containing the falsity is required by law or made for a legal purpose. (G.R. No. 192565. February 28, 2012)

[15] Presumption re Falsified Documents.

As held by the Supreme Court in the case of People vs. Manansala (105 Phil. 1253), it is an established rule that when a person has in his possession a falsified document and makes use of the same, the presumption or inference is justified that such person is the forger. (G.R. No. 178652. December 8, 2010)

[16] Concubinage.

Any husband who shall keep a mistress in the conjugal dwelling, or shall have sexual intercourse, under scandalous circumstances, with a woman who is not his wife, or shall cohabit with her in any other place, shall be punished by prision correccional in its minimum and medium periods. The concubine shall suffer the penalty of destierro. (Article 334 of the Revised Penal Code)

[17] Scandalous Circumstances; Concubinage.

There should be a public or open flaunting of the illicit relationship so that the public is scandalized, shocked, or the conduct give rise to general protest, or that the relationship sets a bad example.
[18] Forcible Abduction.

The abduction of any woman against her will and with lewd designs shall be punished by reclusion temporal. The same penalty shall be imposed in every case, if the female abducted be under twelve years of age. (Article 342 of the Revised Penal Code)

The elements are [a] the person abducted is any woman, regardless of her age, civil status or reputation; [b] the abduction is against her will; and [c] the abduction is with lewd designs. If the female abducted is under 12 years old, the crime is forcible abduction, even if she voluntarily goes with her abductor.

Abduction is the taking away of a woman from her house or the place where she may be for the purpose of carrying her to another place with the intent to marry or to corrupt her.

[19] Type-2 Rape.

The second mode of Rape under Article 266-A of the Revised Penal Code is called "Rape through Sexual Assault." The elements are:

[a] The offender commits an act of sexual assault;
[b] Such sexual assault is done by: [i] inserting his penis into another person's mouth or anal orifice; or [ii] inserting any instrument or object into the genital or anal orifice of another person; and
[c] The sexual assault was accomplished: [i] with force or intimidation; [ii] on a person deprived of reason or otherwise unconscious; [iii] fraudulent machination or grave abuse of authority; or [iv] on a person under 12 years of age or a demented person.

[20] Statutory Rape; Age of Consent; Child Abuse.

The age of consent in the Philippines is 12 years old meaning that non-forcible sexual intercourse with a child 11 years and below is considered as statutory rape. Sexual intercourse with a woman who is deprived of reason or with a girl who is below twelve years of age is rape because she is incapable of giving rational consent to the carnal intercourse. (G.R. No. 168932)

[21] Difference between Libel and Slander by Deed.

In Libel, the defamation is in the form of written expressions. This is why Libel is also called "written defamation." On the other hand, Slander by Deed is committed by performing any act (not constituting any other crime) which shall cast dishonor, discredit or contempt upon another person.

[22] Difference between Bribery and Indirect Bribery.

Direct Bribery is "in connection with the performance of this official duties, in consideration of any offer, promise, gift or present received by such officer." Indirect Bribery is "by reason of his office."

[23] Examples of Corrupt Practices under RA 3019.

Below are five examples of corrupt practices under Republic Act No. 3019, or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act.

[a] Directly or indirectly requesting or receiving any gift, present, share, percentage, or benefit, for himself or for any other person, in connection with any contract or transaction between the Government and any other part, wherein the public officer in his official capacity has to intervene under the law.

[b] Accepting or having any member of his family accept employment in a private enterprise which has pending official business with him during the pendency thereof or within one year after its termination.

[c] Entering, on behalf of the Government, into any contract or transaction manifestly and grossly disadvantageous to the same, whether or not the public officer profited or will profit thereby.

[d] Knowingly approving or granting any license, permit, privilege or benefit in favor of any person not qualified for or not legally entitled to such license, permit, privilege or advantage, or of a mere representative or dummy of one who is not so qualified or entitled.

[e] Divulging valuable information of a confidential character, acquired by his office or by him on account of his official position to unauthorized persons, or releasing such information in advance of its authorized release date.

[24] Quasi-Offenses.

Quasi-offenses, whether reckless or simple, are distinct species of crime, separately defined and penalized under the framework of our penal laws. There are three things supporting the theory that quasi-offenses are crimes in themselves: [a] the object of punishment in quasi-crimes (as opposed to intentional crimes); [b] the legislative intent to treat quasi-crimes as distinct offenses (as opposed to subsuming them under the mitigating circumstance of minimal intent) and; [c] the different penalty structures for quasi-crimes and intentional crimes. (G.R. No. 172716. November 17, 2010)

Article 365 is a substantive rule penalizing not an act defined as a felony but "the mental attitude behind the act, the dangerous recklessness, lack of care or foresight x x x," a single mental attitude regardless of the resulting consequences. Thus, Article 365 was crafted as one quasi-crime resulting in one or more consequences. (G.R. No. 172716. November 17, 2010)

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