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Ilusorio vs Bildner (2000)

Erlinda filed with the Court of Appeals a petition for habeas corpus to have the
custody of her husband lawyer Potenciano Ilusorio. She alleged that respondents
(children) refused her demands to see and visit her husband and prohibited
Potenciano
from
returning
to
Antipolo
City.

G.R. No. 139789 and G.R. No. 139808 | 2000-05-12

Subject: Function of the writ of habeas corpus; To justify the grant of the habeas
corpus writ, the illegal restraint of liberty must be actual and effective, not merely
nominal or moral; Soundness of mind does not hinge on age or medical condition
but on the capacity of the individual to discern his actions; No actual and effective
deprivation of liberty that would justify the issuance of the writ; Potenciano Ilusorio
may not be the subject of visitation rights against his free choice; Court cannot
compel
one
spouse
to
cohabit
with
the
other

The Court of Appeals rendered decision dismissing the habeas corpus petition for
lack of basis (no unlawful restratint shown) but ordering respondent children, for
humanitarian reasons, to allow Erlinda visitation rights over her husband.

Facts:

Function

In 1942, Erlinda Kalaw married lawyer Potenciano Ilusorio. After thirty years, or in
1972, they separated from bed and board for undisclosed reasons. The spouses had
six (6) children: Ramon, Erlinda (Lin) Ilusorio Bildner, Maximo, Sylvia, Marietta and
Shereen.

1. A writ of habeas corpus extends to all cases of illegal confinement or detention,


or by which the rightful custody of a person is withheld from the one entitled
thereto. It is available where a person continues to be unlawfully denied of one or
more of his constitutional freedoms, where there is denial of due process, where the
restraints are not merely involuntary but are unnecessary, and where a deprivation
of freedom originally valid has later become arbitrary. It is devised as a speedy and
effectual remedy to relieve persons from unlawful restraint, as the best and only
sufficient
defense
of
personal
freedom.

Hence,

the

two

petitions

filed

by

the

opposing

parties.

Held:

In 1997, upon Potenciano's arrival from the United States, he stayed with Erlinda
for about five months in Antipolo City. The children, Sylvia and Lin, alleged that
during this time, their mother gave Potenciano an overdose of 200 mg instead of 100
mg Zoloft, an antidepressant drug prescribed by his doctor in New York. As a
consequence,
Potenciano's
health
deteriorated.

of

the

writ

of

habeas

corpus

2. The essential object and purpose of the writ of habeas corpus is to inquire into
all manner of involuntary restraint, and to relieve a person therefrom if such
restraint
is
illegal.

In February, 1998, Erlinda filed with the RTC, Antipolo City a petition for
guardianship over the person and property of Potenciano Ilusorio due to the latter's
advanced age, frail health, poor eyesight and impaired judgment. Potenciano
Ilusorio is about 86 years of age and possessed of extensive property valued at
millions of pesos. For many years, lawyer Potenciano Ilusorio was Chairman of the
Board
and
President
of
Baguio
Country
Club.

To justify the grant of the habeas corpus writ, the illegal restraint of liberty
must
be
actual
and
effective,
not
merely
nominal
or
moral
3. To justify the grant of the petition, the restraint of liberty must be an illegal and
involuntary deprivation of freedom of action. The illegal restraint of liberty must be
actual
and
effective,
not
merely
nominal
or
moral.

On May 31, 1998, after attending a corporate meeting in Baguio City, Potenciano
Ilusorio did not return to Antipolo City and instead lived at Cleveland Condominium,
Makati

Soundness of mind does not hinge on age or medical condition but on the

capacity

of

the

individual

to

discern

his

a petition for habeas corpus where Erlinda never even prayed for such right. The
ruling is not consistent with the finding of subject's sanity. When the court ordered
the grant of visitation rights, it also emphasized that the same shall be enforced
under penalty of contempt in case of violation or refusal to comply. Such assertion
of
raw,
naked
power
is
unnecessary.

actions

4. As to lawyer Potenciano Ilusorio's mental state, the Court of Appeals observed


that he was of sound and alert mind, having answered all the relevant questions to
the satisfaction of the court. The fact that lawyer Potenciano Ilusorio is about 86
years of age, or under medication does not necessarily render him mentally
incapacitated.Soundness of mind does not hinge on age or medical condition but on
the
capacity
of
the
individual
to
discern
his
actions.

Court

cannot

compel

one

spouse

to

cohabit

with

the

other

9. The Court of Appeals missed the fact that the case did not involve the right of a
parent to visit a minor child but the right of a wife to visit a husband. In case the
husband refuses to see his wife for private reasons, he is at liberty to do so without
threat
of
any
penalty
attached
to
the
exercise
of
his
right.

No actual and effective deprivation of liberty that would justify the issuance of
the
writ
5. The evidence shows that there was no actual and effective detention or
deprivation of lawyer Potenciano Ilusorio's liberty that would justify the issuance of
the writ. Being of sound mind, Potenciano Ilusorio is thus possessed with the
capacity to make choices. In this case, the crucial choices revolve on his residence
and the people he opts to see or live with. The choices he made may not appeal to
some of his family members but these are choices which exclusively belong to
Potenciano. He made it clear before the Court of Appeals that he was not prevented
from leaving his house or seeing people. With that declaration, and absent any true
restraint on his liberty, we have no reason to reverse the findings of the Court of
Appeals.

10. No court is empowered as a judicial authority to compel a husband to live with


his wife. Coverture cannot be enforced by compulsion of a writ of habeas corpus
carried out by sheriffs or by any other mesne process. That is a matter beyond
judicial authority and is best left to the man and woman's free choice.

Lacson vs. Perez (2001)


G.R. No. 147780 | 2001-05-10

Potenciano Ilusorio may not be the subject of visitation rights against his free
choice
Subject: Petitions have become moot; Petition for prohibition and mandamus are
not the proper remedies against a warrantless arrest; (Lacson group): Petitions for
prohibition and habeas corpus are premature since no criminal charges have been
filed and any fear of unlawful restraint is merely speculative; (Santiago petition):
Mandamus will not issue unless the right to relief is clear at the time of the award;
(Lumbao petition): Declaration of a state of rebellion is the domain of the President,
in exercise of Commander in Chief powers; (LDP Petition): LDP not a real party in
interest since, being a juridical person, it is not subject to arrest

6. The Court of Appeals also observed that lawyer Potenciano Ilusorio did not
request the administrator of the Cleveland Condominium not to allow his wife and
other children from seeing or visiting him. He made it clear that he did not object to
seeing
them.
7. With his full mental capacity coupled with the right of choice, Potenciano
Ilusorio may not be the subject of visitation rights against his free choice.
Otherwise, we will deprive him of his right to privacy. Needless to say, this will run
against
his
fundamental
constitutional
right.

Facts:

8. The Court of Appeals exceeded its authority when it awarded visitation rights in

On May 1, 2001, President Macapagal-Arroyo, faced by an "angry and violent mob


armed with explosives, firearms, bladed weapons, clubs, stones and other deadly
weapons" assaulting and attempting to break into Malacaang, issued Proclamation
No. 38 declaring that there was a state of rebellion in the National Capital Region.
She likewise issued General Order No. 1 directing the Armed Forces of the
Philippines and the Philippine National Police to suppress the rebellion in the
National Capital Region. Warrantless arrests of several alleged leaders and
promoters
of
the
"rebellion"
were
thereafter
effected.

3. Moreover, petitioners' contention that they are under imminent danger of being
arrested without warrant do not justify their resort to the extraordinary remedies of
mandamus and prohibition, since an individual subjected to warrantless arrest is
not without adequate remedies in the ordinary course of law. Such an individual
may ask for a preliminary investigation under Rule 112 of the Rules of court, where
he may adduce evidence in his defense, or he may submit himself to inquest
proceedings to determine whether or not he should remain under custody and
correspondingly be charged in court. Further, a person subject of a warrantless
arrest must be delivered to the proper judicial authorities within the periods
provided in Article 125 of the Revised Penal Code, otherwise the arresting officer
could be held liable for delay in the delivery of detained persons. Should the
detention be without legal ground, the person arrested can charge the arresting
officer with arbitrary detention. All this is without prejudice to his filing an action
for damages against the arresting officer under Article 32 of the Civil Code. Verily,
petitioners have a surfeit of other remedies which they can avail themselves of,
thereby making the prayer for prohibition and mandamus improper at this time
(Sections
2
and
3,
Rule
65,
Rules
of
Court).

Thereafter, the four present petitions( for prohibition, injunction, mandamus, and
habeas corpus) were filed before the Supreme Court. All the petitions assail the
declaration of a state of rebellion by President Arroyo and the warrantless arrests
allegedly effected by virtue thereof, as having no basis both in fact an in law.
As to petitioner's claim that the proclamation of a "state of rebellion" is being used
by the authorities to justify warrantless arrests, the Secretary of Justice Hernando
Perez denies that it has issued a particular order to arrest specific persons in
connection with the "rebellion."He states that what is extant are general
instructions to law enforcement officers and military agencies to implement
Proclamation
No.
38.
Indeed

(Lacson group): Petitions for prohibition and habeas corpus are premature
since no criminal charges have been filed and any fear of unlawful restraint is
merely
speculative

Held:
Petitions

have

become

4. In connection with their alleged impending warrantless arrest, petitioners


Lacson, Aquino, and Mancao pray that the "appropriate court before whom the
informations against petitioners are filed be directed to desist from arraigning and
proceeding with the trial of the case, until the instant petition is finally resolved."
This relief is clearly premature considering that as of this date, no complaints or
charges have been filed against any of the petitioners for any crime. And in the event
that the same are later filed, this court cannot enjoin criminal prosecution
conducted in accordance with the Rules of Court, for by that time any arrest would
have
been
in
pursuance
of
a
duly
issued
warrant.

moot

1. Significantly, on May 6, 2001, President Macapagal-Arroyo ordered the lifting of


the declaration of a "state of rebellion" in Metro Manila. Accordingly, the instant
petitions
have
been
rendered
moot
and
academic.
Petition for prohibition and mandamus are not the proper remedies against a
warrantless
arrest

5. As regards petitioner's prayer that the hold departure orders issued against them
be declared null and void ab initio, it is to be noted that petitioners are not directly
assailing the validity of the subject hold departure orders in their petition. They are
not even expressing intention to leave the country in the near future. The prayer to
set aside the same must be made in proper proceedings initiated for that purpose.

2. In quelling or suppressing the rebellion, the authorities may only resort to


warrantless arrests of persons suspected of rebellion, as provided under Section 5,
Rule 113 of the Rules of Court, if the circumstances so warrant. The warrantless
arrest feared by petitioners is not based on the declaration of a "state of rebellion."

6. Anent petitioner's allegations ex abundante ad cautelam in support of their


application for the issuance of a writ of habeas corpus, it is manifest that the writ is
not called for since its purpose is to relieve petitioners from unlawful restraint , a
matter
which remains
speculative up
to
this
very
day.

such judgment might also prove unmanageable for the courts. Certain pertinent
information might be difficult to verify, or wholly unavailable to the courts. In many
instances, theevidence upon which the President might decide that there is a need
to call out the armed forces may be of a nature not constituting technical proof. On
the other hand, the President as Commander-in-Chief has a vast intelligence
network to gather information, some of which may be classified as highly
confidential or affecting the security of the state. In the exercise of the power to call,
on-the-spot decisions may be imperatively necessary in emergency situations to
avert great loss of human lives and mass destruction of property. (see IBP vs.
Zamora)

(Santiago petition): Mandamus will not issue unless the right to relief is clear
at
the
time
of
the
award
7. The petition is denominated as one for mandamus. It is basic in matters relating
to petitions for mandamus that the legal right of the petitioner to the performance of
a particular act which is sought to be compelled must be clear and complete.
Mandamus will not issue unless the right to relief is clear at the time of the award.
Up to the present time, petitioner Defensor-Santiago has not shown that she is in
imminent danger of being arrested without a warrant. In point of fact, the
authorities have categorically stated that petitioner will not be arrested without a
warrant.

11. The Court, in a proper case, may look into the sufficiency of the factual basis of
the exercise of this power. However, this is no longer feasible at this time,
Proclamation
No.
38
having
been
lifted.
(LDP Petition): LDP not a real party in interest since, being a juridical person,
it
is
not
subject
to
arrest

(Lumbao petition): Declaration of a state of rebellion is the domain of the


President,
in
exercise
of
Commander
in
Chief
powers

12. Petitioner Laban ng Demoktratikong Pilipino is not a real party-in-interest. The


rule requires that a party must show a personal stake in the outcome of the case or
an injury to himself that can be redressed by a favorable decision so as to warrant
an invocation of the court's jurisdiction and to justify the exercise of the court's
remedial powers in his behal. Here, petitioner has not demonstrated any injury to
itself which would justify resort to the Court. Petitioner is a juridical person not
subject to arrest. Thus, it cannot claim to be threatened by a warrantless arrest. Nor
is it alleged that its leaders, members, and supporters are being threatened with
warrantless arrest and detention for the crime of rebellion. Every action must be
brought in the name of the party whose legal right has been invaded or infringed, or
whose legal right is under imminent threat of invasion or infringement.

8. Petitioner Lumbao, leader of the People's Movement against Poverty (PMAP)


argues that the declaration of a "state of rebellion" is violative of the doctrine of
separation of powers, being an encroachment on the domain of the judiciary which
has the constitutional prerogative to "determine or interpret" what took place on
May 1, 2001, and that the declaration of a state of rebellion cannot be an exception
to the general rule on the allocation of the governmental powers.
9. Section 18, Article VII of the Constitution expressly provides that "[t]he President
shall be the Commander-in-Chief of all armed forces of the Philippines
and whenever it becomes necessary, he may call out such armed forces to prevent or
suppress
lawless
violence,
invasion
or
rebellion..."

13. At best, the instant petition may be considered as an action for declaratory
relief, petitioner claiming that its right to freedom of expression and freedom of
assembly is affected by the declaration of a "state of rebellion" and that said
proclamation is invalid for being contrary to the Constitution. However, to consider
the petition as one for declaratory relief affords little comfort to petitioner,
the Supreme Court not having jurisdiction in the first instance over such a petition.

10. The factual necessity of calling out the armed forces is not easily quantifiable
and cannot be objectively established since matters considered for satisfying the
same is a combination of several factors which are not always accessible to the
courts. Besides the absence of testual standards that the court may use to judge
necessity, information necessary to arrive at such judgment might also prove
unmanageable for the courts. Certain pertinent information necessary to arrive at

issuance of a writ of habeas corpus and the release of Lovely Impal Adam.

Sangca vs. City Prosecutor of Cebu City (2007)


G.R. No. 175864 | 2007-06-08

Finding that Adam could not be held liable for the crime charged, Judge Ingles
issued an Order granting the Motion to Withdraw Information and ordering the
release of the accused, unless otherwise held for another valid ground.

Subject: A writ of habeas corpus extends to all cases of illegal confinement or


detention

Held:
Facts:
A writ of habeas corpus extends to all cases of illegal confinement or detention
The PDEA, Regional Office VII, received information that Adam was engaged in
illegal drug trafficking activities in Cebu City and neighboring cities and
municipalities. They planned an entrapment operation leading to the arrest of
Adam.

1. A writ of habeas corpus extends to all cases of illegal confinement or detention in


which any person is deprived of his liberty, or in which the rightful custody of any
person is withheld from the person entitled to it. Its essential object and purpose is
to inquire into all manner of involuntary restraint and to relieve a person from it if
such restraint is illegal. The singular function of a petition for habeas corpus is to
protect
and
secure
the
basic
freedom
of
physical
liberty.

The inquest prosecutor recommended the dismissal of the case but was disapproved
by the City Prosecutor. Consequently, an information charging Adam with violation
of Section 5, Article 2 of R.A. No. 9165 was filed before the RTC of Cebu City.

2. In the instant case, Adam has been released upon order of the trial judge.
Therefore,
the
petition
has
become
moot.
On petition for review before the Department of Justice, Secretary Raul M. Gonzalez
found no probable cause to hold Adam liable for the offense charged. The Justice
Secretary directed the City Prosecutor of Cebu City to withdraw the information.
PDEA filed a motion for reconsideration but was denied by the Justice Secretary.

Mangila vs Pangilinan (2013)


G.R. No. 160739 | 2013-07-17

Anisah Impal Sangca filed a petition before the Supreme Court praying for the

the

Subject: Habeas corpus is neither in the nature of a writ of erro nor intended as
substitute for the trial courts function; Restraint that is lawful and pursuant to a
court process cannot be inquired into through habeas corpus.

warrant.

The CA denied the petition for habeas corpus for its lack of merit and also denied
the
subsequent
motion
for
reconsideration.

Facts:

Held:

Anita Mangila and four others was charged with seven criminal complaints with
syndicated estafa in violation of Article 315 of the RPC and with violations of Section
7(b) of Republic Act No. 8042 in the MTC Puerto Princesa City. The complaints arose
from the recruiting and promising of employment by Mangila and the others to the
private complainants as overseas contract workers in Toronto, Canada, and from the
collection of visa processing fees, membership fees and on-line application the
private
complainants
without
lawful
authority
from
the
POEA.

Habeas corpus is neither in the nature of a writ of error nor intended as


substitute
for
the
trial
courts
function

1. The high prerogative writ of habeas corpus has been devised as a speedy and
effective
remedy
to
relieve
persons
from
unlawful
restraint.

Judge Heriberto M. Pangilinan, Presiding Judge of the MTCC, conducted a


preliminary investigation on the complaints. Judge Pangilinan issued a warrant for
the
arrest
of
Mangila
and
her
cohorts
without
bail.

2. In Ex Parte Billings, it was held that habeas corpus is that of a civil proceeding in
character. It seeks the enforcement of civil rights. Resorting to the writ is not to
inquire into the criminal act of which the complaint is made, but into the right of
liberty, notwithstanding the act and the immediate purpose to be served is relief
from illegal restraint. The rule applies even when instituted to arrest a criminal
prosecution and secure freedom. When a prisoner petitions for a writ of habeas
corpus, he thereby commences a suit and prosecutes a case in that court. (See
Caballes
v.
Court
of
Appeals)

Mangila was arrested and detained at the headquarters on Taft Avenue, Manila of
the
NBI.

Mangila filed in the Court of Appeals a petition for habeas corpus to obtain her
release from detention. She averred that the remedy of habeas corpus was available
to her because she could no longer file a motion to quash or a motion to recall the
warrant of arrest considering that Judge Pangilinan had already forwarded the
entire records of the case to the City Prosecutor who had no authority to lift or recall

3. Habeas corpus is not in the nature of a writ of error; nor intended as substitute
for the trial courts function. It cannot take the place of appeal, certiorari or writ of
error. The writ cannot be used to investigate and consider questions of error that
might
be
raised
relating
to
procedure
or
on
the
merits.

custodian has authority to deprive the petitioner of his liberty. The writ may be
denied if the petitioner fails to show facts that he is entitled thereto ex merito
justicias.

4. The inquiry in a habeas corpus proceeding is addressed to the question of


whether the proceedings and the assailed order are, for any reason, null and void.
The writ is not ordinarily granted where the law provides for other remedies in the
regular
course,
and
in
the
absence
of
exceptional
circumstances.

7. In this case, Judge Pangilinan was empowered to conduct preliminary


investigations involving "all crimes cognizable by the proper court in their respective
territorial jurisdictions." His authority was expressly provided in Section 2, Rule
112
of
the
Revised
Rules
of
Criminal
Procedure.

5. Habeas corpus should not be granted in advance of trial. The orderly course of
trial must be pursued and the usual remedies exhausted before resorting to the writ
where
exceptional
circumstances
are
extant.

8. Under Section 6(b) of Rule 112of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure, the
investigating judge could issue a warrant of arrest during the preliminary
investigation even without awaiting its conclusion should he find after an
examination in writing and under oath of the complainant and the witnesses in the
form of searching questions and answers that a probable cause existed.

Restraint that is lawful and pursuant to a court process cannot be inquired


into
through
habeas
corpus

9. In this case, Judge Pangilinan issued the warrant of arrest against Mangila and
her cohorts. The petition for habeas corpus cannot be granted because Mangila had
been arrested and detained by virtue of the warrant issued for her arrest by Judge
Pangilinan, a judicial officer undeniably possessing the legal authority to do so.

5. Habeas corpus cannot be issued as a writ of error or as a means of reviewing


errors of law and irregularities not involving the questions of jurisdiction occurring
during the course of the trial, subject to the caveat that constitutional safeguards of
human life and liberty must be preserved, and not destroyed. It has also been held
that where restraint is under legal process, mere errors and irregularities, which do
not render the proceedings void, are not grounds for relief by habeas corpus
because
in
such
cases,
the
restraint
is
not
illegal.

10. With Mangilas arrest and ensuing detention being by virtue of the order lawfully
issued by Judge Pangilinan, the writ of habeas corpus was not an appropriate
remedy to relieve her from the restraint on her liberty. This is because the restraint,
being lawful and pursuant to a court process, could not be inquired into through
habeas
corpus.

6. Habeas corpus is a summary remedy. It is analogous to a proceeding in rem


when instituted for the sole purpose of having the person of restraint presented
before the judge in order that the cause of his detention may be inquired into and
his statements final. The writ does not act upon the prisoner who seeks relief, but
upon the person who holds him in what is alleged to be the unlawful authority.
Hence, the only parties before the court are the petitioner (prisoner) and the person
holding the petitioner in custody, and the only question to be resolved is whether the

11. It was clear that under Section 5, Rule 112 of the Revised Rules of Criminal
Procedure, the resolution of the investigating judge was not final but was still

subject to the review by the public prosecutor who had the power to order the
release of the detainee if no probable cause should beultimately found against her.

supposed irregularities attending the conduct of the preliminary investigation and


the issuance of the warrant for her arrest to the attention of the City Prosecutor,
who had been meanwhile given the most direct access to the entire records of the
case, including the warrant of arrest, following Judge Pangilinans transmittal of
them to the City Prosecutor for appropriate action. The writ of habeas corpus could
not be used as a substitute for another available remedy.

12. In this case, Mangila had no need to seek the issuance of the writ of habeas
corpus to secure her release from detention. Her proper recourse was to bring the