Monday, February 20, 2012

People of the Philippines vs. Fernando Felipe G. R. No. L-40432, July 19, 1982

Facts: Herein accused Fernando Felipe was convicted by the lower court of the crime of rape committed by him against his niece-in-law Ruth Pancho. As a result of the incident the victim got pregnant, who was then 25 years old.

When the accused appealed his case, one of his defenses was the fact that the victim’s child was born on March 13, 1972 and that the victim could not have been raped on July 9, 1971 because there are only 247 days between these dates. Accused claimed that the normal period of gestation is 280 days and the Civil Code considers 300 days as the length of uterine development of a child.

Issue: Whether or not the victim’s child is considered a normal child.

Held: Yes, the victim’s child was normal. As aptly contended by the Solicitor General in his brief, "a child born 8 months and seven days after conception is considered normal. ...; that in certain instances the Civil Code considers 300 days as the length of the uterine development of a child, but by providing that a premature child is one which has an intra-uterine life of less than seven months (Art. 41, Civil Code) the Code impliedly recognizes that a child which had an intra-uterine life of 8 months, as in the case at bar, is a normal child."

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