83601080 Estafa Cases

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    G.R. Nos. 59568-76 January 11, 1990

    PETER NIERRAS, petitioner,vs.HON. AUEN!IO !. "A!U#!U# an$ HON. ANTONIO S. %OPE&, 'n ()*'r +aa+'(y as Pr*s'$'n Ju$*, ran+) I/, !our( o'rs( Ins(an+* o %*y(*, Pa2o, %*y(*, an$ !'(y 's+a2 o Ta+2o3an !'(y, %*y(*, r*s*+('4*2y, respondents.

    Victor C. Veloso for petitioner.


    Before Us is a petition for certiorariwith preliminary injunction for the annulment of the resolution dated September 17, 1981 of therespondent ud!e "u#encio $. %acuycuy in nine &9' criminal cases, entitled ()eople of the )hilippines v. )eter *ierras( doc+eted as$riminal $ases *os. -79, -8, -81, -8/, -8-, -8, -80, -8 and -87, for estafa under "rticle -10 &/2d' of the 3evised)enal $ode which denied petitioner4s motion to 5uash. Said motion to 5uash was filed by petitioner on the !round of double jeopardyas these offenses were already included in $riminal $ases *os. -79, -791, -79/, -79-, 80, 1//, 1/-, 1/, and 1/0, entitled()eople of the )hilippines v. )eter *ierras,( for violation of the Bouncin! $hec+s 6aw or Batas )ambansa Bl!. //, pendin! before thelower court. n both sets of criminal cases, petitioner entered a plea of not !uilty upon arrai!nment before the lower court. owever,immediately after his plea of not !uilty in these estafa cases, petitioner moved in open court to be allowed to withdraw his plea of not!uilty upon his filin! of a motion to 5uash, which was denied by respondent ud!e rulin! as follows

    :he motion to 5uash should be and is hereby denied. "ccused )eter *ierras alle!edly issued the chec+s in favor ofcomplainant )ilipinas Shell )etroleum $orporation in payment of oil products which the latter delivered to him

    simultaneously with the issuance of the chec+s.

    ### ### ###

    . . . :he crime of estafa committed by means of bouncin! chec+s is not committed by mere issuance of a chec+.Under "rt. -10, par. / &d' of the 3evised )enal $ode, as amended by 3epublic "ct 880, the followin! are theelements of estafa &1' the postdatin! or issuance of a chec+ in payment of an obli!ation contracted at the time thechec+ was issued; &/' lac+ of or insufficiency of funds to cover the chec+; and &-' dama!e to the payee thereof&)eople v. Sabio, 8 S$3" 08'. Under Batas )ambansa Bilan! // &1979' the mere issuance of a chec+ withoutsufficient funds issued in payment of a simultaneous obli!ation and the chec+ was dishonored upon presentationfor that estafa is committed under the 3evised )enal $ode. "t the same time, the drawer will also be liable underBatas )ambansa Bilan! // for offense of issuin! a chec+ without sufficient funds &pp. 12/, 3esolution uash dated September 17, 1981; "nne# (==(, )etition'. &p. 1, Rollo'

    :he issue now submitted for

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    @hat petitioner failed to mention in his ar!ument is the fact that deceit and dama!e are essential elements in "rticle -10 &/2d'3evised )enal $ode, but are notre5uired in Batas )ambansa Bilan! //. Under the latter law, mere issuance of a chec+ that isdishonored !ives rise to the presumption of +nowled!e on the part of the drawer that he issued the same without sufficient funds andhence punishable &)eople v. eridiano, 1-/ S$3" 0/-' which is not so under the )enal $ode.

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    by law,( invo+in! the rule laid down in !eople v.'agdaluyo&1 S$3" 99'. f the petitioner cannot appeal at this state of theproceedin!, it is because there is still a necessity for the trial on the merits wherein the parties may present proofs in support of theircontentions and not because the remedy of appeal is unavailin!.


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    $ontrary to law.

    :he nformations char!in!

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    :A 6

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    $hua. ad her intention been tainted with malice and deceit, appellant would not have e#erted e#traordinary effort to pay thecomplainant, !iven her own business and financial reverses.


    @e also note that the prosecution presented virtually no evidence to show that the indispensable notice of dishonor was sent toand received by appellant. A#cerpts from the followin! testimony of complainant are si!nificant

    "::G. "*CA6AS

    > *ow, =rs. @itness, when these chec+s from A#hibits J"K to JK have bounced, what steps, did you do?

    " consulted my lawyer and she wrote a %emand 6etter.

    $ @hat is the name of that lawyer?

    " "tty. ir!inia *abora.

    "::G. "*CA6AS

    > *ow, you mentioned a %emand 6etter sent by "tty. ir!inia *abor, am showin! to you this %emand 6etter dated=arch 1, 1988, will you +indly e#amine the same if this is the same %emand 6etter you mentioned a while a!o?

    " Ges, sir.

    > *ow, on this second pa!e of this %emand 6etter there is a si!nature above the printed name ir!inia Cuevarra *abor,do you +now the si!nature, =rs. @itness?

    " Ges, that is the si!nature of my lawyer.

    "::G. "*CA6AS

    =ay we re5uest that this %emand 6etter dated =arch 1, 1988 consistin! of two &/' pa!es, Gour onor, be mar+ed asA#hibit J@K and that the si!nature on the second pa!e of this letter of ir!inia Cuevarra *abor be encircled and bemar+ed as A#hibit J@21K and that the attached 3e!istry 3eceipt, Gour onor, be mar+ed as A#hibit J@2/K.

    $ *ow, =rs. @itness, why do you +now that this is the si!nature of ir!inia Cuevarra *abor?

    " "fter preparin! that saw her si!n the letter.

    > *ow, after sendin! this %emand 6etter, do you +now f the accused herein made payments or replaced the chec+s thatwere issued to you?

    $ *ow, aside from sendin! this %emand 6etter, do you +now what your lawyer did?

    " @e filed a case with the FiscalKs.H/0I

    "side from the above testimony, no other reference to the demand letter was made by the prosecution. :he prosecutionclaimed that the demand letter was sent by re!istered mail. :o prove this, it presented a copy of the demand letter as well as there!istry return receipt bearin! a si!nature which was, however, not even authenticated or identified. " re!istry receipt alone isinsufficient as proof of mailin!.H/IM3eceipts for re!istered letters and return receipts do not prove themselves; they must be properlyauthenticated in order to serve as proof of receipt of the letters.NH/7I

    t is clear from the fore!oin! that complainant merely presumed that appellant received the demand letter prepared and sentby her lawyer. She was not certain if appellant indeed received the notice of dishonor of the chec+s. "ll she +new was that a demandletter was sent by her lawyer to the appellant. n fact, ri!ht after complainant made that presumption, her lawyer filed the criminalcases a!ainst appellant at the FiscalKs officeH/8Iwithout any confirmation that the demand letter supposedly sent throu!h re!isteredmail was actually received by appellant.

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    @ith the evident lac+ of notice of dishonor of the chec+s, appellant cannot be held !uilty of violation of B) //. :he lac+ of suchnotice violated appellantKs ri!ht to procedural due process. Mt is a !eneral rule that when service of notice is an issue, the personalle!in! that the notice was served must prove the fact of service.N H/9I:he burden of provin! receipt of notice rests upon the partyassertin! it and the 5uantum of proof re5uired for conviction in this criminal case is proof beyond reasonable doubt.

    @hen, durin! the trial, appellant denied havin! received the demand letter, it became incumbent upon the prosecution to provethat the demand letter was indeed sent throu!h re!istered mail and that the same was received by appellant. But it didnot. U::A% in$riminal $ase *o. 882//8 for estafa and in $riminal $ase *os. 882/-, 882/-/, 882/-0 to 882/, 882//, 882/-,882/0 to 882/8 for violation of B) //.

    SO OR"ERE".

    Vitug" ($hairman)" Sandoval+utierre&" andCarpio'orales" ,,." concur.

    H1I)enned by ud!e "rturo U. Barias, r.

    H/IRollo, p. .

    H-IA#hibit M"N.

    HIA#hibit MGN.

    H0IA#hibits MQN, MGN, M""N, MBBN and M$$N.

    HIA#hibits M$N, MN, MN, M=N, M

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    H//I)eople vs. Culion, -9 S$3" 1 H/1I; allartavs.$ourt of "ppeals, 10 S$3" -- H1987I; )eople vs. illapando, 0 )hil. -1H19-1I.

    H/-I/8 S$3" --/ H1997I.

    H/I6ecaroD vs. Sandi!anbayan ,-0 S$3" -9 H1999I.

    H/0I:S*, %ecember 7, 1989, pp. -72-.

    H/I:in! vs. $ourt of "ppeals ,- S$3" 001 H/I, citin! $entral :rust $o. vs.$ity of %es =oines" /18 *@ 08.

    H/7I:in!vs. $ourt of "ppeals, ibid.


    :S*, %ecember 7, 1989, pp. /2/-.H/9I:in!vs.$ourt of "ppeals, supra"citin! 08 "m ur /d, *otice, R 0.

    H-I$aras vs. $ourt of "ppeals, - S$3" -71 H/1I.

    H-1I6ao vs. $ourt of "ppeals ,/7 S$3" 07/ H1997I.

    ;'()ou( roo o no('+* o