Tuesday, March 27, 2012

People vs. Bacang

FactsRTC of Negros Orietal ruled on a Criminal case finding accused Casido, Alcorin and Francisco Palacios guilty beyond reasonable doubt of murder and sentencing them to reclusion perpetua and to pay 200k and 25k as actual damages and funeral expenses respectively. Accused Casido and Alcorin appealed to the courts. But the accused later filed motion to withdraw appeal without stating the reason for their actions. The SC later received an endorsement form Superintendent Tesoro informing the court that both Casido and Alcorin were released on Conditional pardon. Thus, following the necessary procedures of submitting certified true copies of the conditional pardons and their certificates of discharge signed by the president, Alcorin and Casido were released for confinement. It was evident that the pardon was issued during the pendency of their instant appeal, which is the controversy of this case 

IssueWhether or not the pardon is valid given that it was granted during the pendency of the instant appeal 

HeldNo it is not valid. This is because Article VII of the present constitution prohibits the grants of pardon whether full or conditional to an accused during the pendency of his appeal from his conviction by TC. (Note: Endorsement of pardon was given earlier than the motion to withdraw the appeal was made hence, it was still appeal was still pending during the pardon grant). Thus, pardon can only be granted or process for pardon shouldn’t have begun when the appeal has yet to be withdrawn. The acceptance of the pardon shall not operate as an abandonment or waiver of the appeal and the release of an accused by virtue of a pardon, commutation of sentence, or parole before the withdrawal of an appeal shall render those responsible administratively liable. 

The conditional pardons granted in this case of Casido and Alcorin are void hor having been extended during the pendency of their instant appeal.

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