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1 SM THEFT CASE on Fri Aug 18, 2017 12:49 pm


Arresto Menor
First of all, I stole clothes at SM Department Store worth 3000 pesos. Sinampahan nila ako ng kaso, and I was detained for about 3days. Pero nag bail yung parents ko kaya nakalabas ako sa presinto at back to school ulit. My question po is, ano po ba yung gagawin namin ng parents ko para ma dismiss yung case? Kasi willing naman daw yung SM makipagsettle. May I ask kung ano po yung ginawa nyong actions (Sa may same experience) para ma dismiss yung case? 1st hearing ko po kasi this August 22,2017 and I really don't know what to do. I have no idea kung anong mangyayari sa loob ng court since its my first time. Please help me po, hoping for your response. At tsaka Ano po yung mga questions ng judge? Ano yung plea ko? Guilty ba or Not Guilty? Kasi po daw pag mag guilty ako mas malaki daw yung charge. Eh, first time offender po ako eh huhu. Magkakaroon po ba ng record ng nbi ko at police clearance in the future? I'm still a student pa po kasi. 18 years old and I don't want na ito lang yung rason bakit hindi ako makatrabaho in the future. Huhu help me po.

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2 Re: SM THEFT CASE on Wed Aug 23, 2017 12:02 am


Arresto Menor
Hows your hearing today?

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3 Legal Advice on Wed Aug 23, 2017 12:39 pm

Dondon Rubio

Arresto Menor
First of all, I want to inform you that I am not yet a lawyer and I am making this legal advice at random.
Frankly speaking, I don't have time right now to conduct an extensive research on the legal materials which are material to your case. The following are just taken (hinugot) from my stock knowledge.

You no longer qualify as a youthful offender by virtue of  the Juvenile Justice and Welfare Act (also known as Republic Act 9344), wherein a minor below 15 years old is exempt from criminal liability. Although in that case, the legal guardian or parents may be civilly liable. You are above 15 and below 18? In such case, it is required that you acted with discernment, in order to be held criminally liable. Maybe, in the latter case, there is also civil liability.

You were detained in jail for 3 days? Those who detained you within 18 (for light felonies), 24 (less serious felonies) or 36 (capital offenses) hours without first filing a criminal case against you is/are guilty of Delay in the Delivery of a Detention Prisoner to the Proper Judicial Authority (Under Article 125 of the Revised Penal Code).  Art. 125. Delay in the delivery of detained persons to the proper judicial authorities. — 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.

But Saturdays and Sundays are not included in counting the number of hours. Legal holidays are not included either.

There could also be pieces of evidence which are inadmissible, like when they were obtained in violation of your constitutional rights.

You are also entitled to the so called Miranda Warning, wherein the arresting officer should inform you that you have the right to remain silent and anything you say could be used for or against you. In fact a police officer can be criminally liable
if he fails to inform you of your Miranda right. (R.A. 694)
Unfortunately or fortunately, persons who are not government officers are not covered by some guaranties of constitutional rights. For instance, the employees of a courier company, say LBC, inspected and confiscated illegal drugs inside a box submitted by a customer for sending it somewhere. It was held by the Supreme Cort in People of the Philippines versus Andrei Marte that the evidence is admissible. In contrast, if it were policemen who did the confiscation, it would not be admissible.

Maybe, the stage of the proceedings is still at the Prosecutor's Office. There is even the so called Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR). There are court appointed experts who conduct mediation proceedings that an amicable settlement might be arrived at between/among the parties.

You have the constitutional right to have a competent and independent counsel (Abogado). If you cannot afford the services of a counsel, the Government, through the Public Attorney's Office (PAO) will provide you with free legal (defense) services.

I suppose that there are preliminary proceedings before the Office of the Public Prosecutor (Fiscal) before the criminal case is finally filed before the appropriate court. (The MTC or MCTC or City Court has jurisdiction over criminal cases punishable with imprisonment of 6 years or lower. If the penalty exceeds 6 years, the RTC has jurisdiction.)

Be cautioned that an offer for compromise, where you are willing to pay the amount of the goods (Php3,000.00) is admissible in evidence against you, as an admission of guilt. Such offer for compromise is not admissible as an evidence of admission of guilt in cases of quasi-offenses or criminal negligence, as when a car driver has sideswiped (nasagi) a pedestrian. The driver in this case is offering money to shoulder the expenses for medical expenses.

Your supposed case, by the way is bailable. Even after conviction in the MTC, you are entitled to post bail.

Did you write that you 'stole' the goods? Remember that you/we are on social media. The whole interested world has access to what we post in here. Maybe, your (such) statement is already admissible against you, because such is freely and voluntarily presented. You have not posted your name or complete identity. But there are Government Agencies, like the NBI, that can trace you through you I.P address. You either used a computer in an internet cafe or at home.
It is even possible that you a (beautiful) girl.

If worse comes to worst, meaning, no amicable settlement is reached,you would be given your day in court. If you admit your guilt, by pleading guilty to the criminal charge, it means that the penalty to be imposed upon you would be lowered. You are also entitled to a mitigating circumstance of minority. One who has not yet reached 18 is a minor. If, God forbid, you get convicted, you can still avail of the benefit of the Probation Law if the penalty imposed is 6 years or below. If you are under probation, you will not be put behind bars. You would only be regularly reporting to the Probation Officer regularly for an specified period of time. But the records of your conviction would be forwarded to the Police and the NBI. You could still apply for clearances there but it would be stamped (on your forehead?) that you had been convicted of the crime of Theft.    

There is also a possibility of acquittal, maybe, because the prosecution failed to establish your guilt beyond reasonable doubt.

The best thing to do now is to settle your supposed case amicably. If you need to cry and kneel down in front of the multi-billionaire owners of SM, you should do it in order to save your head. Maybe, your adversaries are the representative of the security (guards) agency having a contract with SM management. Probably, yours is not an isolated case. Such management has encountered similar experiences in the past and are expecting to encounter some more in the future. Their principal objective is to gain profits in such business establishment. But they are also instructed to deal with every case with prudence and caution.  

I do hereby make a fearless forecast that you would not be prosecuted in Court because there would be an Amicable Settlement. But if a few days later, you once again surface in a similar incident, it would be another story which you personally know better than anybody else.

One advantage of knowing the law is that you know which to fear and which not. The law profession is akin to that of a technician. There are physicians who need to be consulted so that a patient's malady could be cured and his life would be saved.    

Knowledge is power. Power tends to corrupt; absolute power, to corrupt absolutely. Legal Knowledge should be aimed at healing the ails of society. Among the ills of society are economic disparity anatomized by the unequal distribution of wealth and opportunities.

The root causes of social cancer are greed and selfishness which result in the use of dirty and unfair means to get wealth and power.

By the way, I seem to have exceeded in my legal advise. We need to move to another forum to exhaust other ideas in other fields of learning, for instance, the field of creative writing and journalism, wherein I was once involved, to where
'I shall return' after I take this year's Bar Examinations.

I think you are already off the hook as of encoding time. Otherwise, just make a post again and I shall give you further legal advise.

God bless, Baby.

                Addendum started at 1:09

I went back to your letter and was clarified that there is already a case filed against you. In fact you are out on bail.

But I will not erase my previous entries because they are also a rich source of legal knowledge of which i had exerted effort and spent precious time on.

Do all means to have your case settled amicably. Pay Php3,000.00 or even bigger, if necessary. Then, the complainant will have the case dismissed by executing an Affidavit of Desistance.

If your case is dismissed you are off the hook. One of the traces of your supposed case is your record in the Police Blotter, if any. But such is not yet a derogatory record because of the absence of cross examination of the maker of such entry. A Police Blotter is a mere record of routine police activities.

Police Blotter can also be a source of information in case a background investigation is conducted on you. It happens if you join the AFP or any other Government Agency where the conduct of background investigation is necessary.

If you are 18 years old, obviously, you are no longer a minor. One of the legal issues, however, is that you would need parental advice before you contract marriage. It is applicable if one is above 18 but below 21.

You should move heaven and earth in order to have your case dismissed.

Just until here, I am yet to read my Bar Reviewers, in preparation to take the Bar Examinations this coming November.

God bless again. Ingat.

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