You're presumed a thief if you possess stolen item

PEOPLE V. ALHAMBRA: Finally, appellants argue that the prosecution's evidence is insufficient to convict them of the crime charged because there was no proof that he actually took the car of Cesar Pablo. However, proof that the accused is in possession of a recently stolen property gives rise to a valid presumption that he stole the property. The presumption may be overcome by explanation of the possession on some basis other than theft, or by any evidence indicating that the property was obtained honestly. (G.R. No. 103272. July 4, 1994)

The law presumes that a person in possession of a stolen piece of property is the perpetrator of the theft. It must be emphasized that this presumption is rebuttable. The accused may present clear and convincing evidence to show that he came into possession thereof not through theft.

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