968 Probation Law as amended Contrary to his remonstrations the release of an

968 probation law as amended contrary to his

This preview shows page 14 - 15 out of 44 pages.

probation under Presidential Decree No. 968 (Probation Law), as amended. Contrary to his remonstrations, the release of an accused on recognizance entails more than a cursory interview of the custodian and the applicant. Under the Probation Law,46 and as we explained in Poso v. Judge Mijares,47 it is incumbent upon the Judge hearing the application to ascertain first that the applicant is not a "disqualified offender" as "(p)utting the discharge of the accused on hold would have allowed [the judge] more time to pass upon the request for provisional liberty." Moreover, from Judge Floro’s explanations, it would seem that he completely did away with the requirement for an investigation report by the probation officer. Under the Probation Law, the accused’s temporary liberty is warranted only during the period for awaiting the submission of the investigation report on the application for probation and the resolution thereon.48 As we explained in Poso v. Judge Mijares49 : It must be stressed that the statutory sequence of actions, i.e., order to conduct case study prior to action on application for release on recognizance, was prescribed precisely to underscore the interim character of the provisional liberty envisioned under the Probation Law. Stated differently, the temporary liberty of an applicant for probation is effective no longer than the period for awaiting the submission of the investigation report and the resolution of the petition, which the law mandates as no more than sixty (60) days to finish the case study and report and a maximum of fifteen (15) days from receipt of the report for the trial judge to resolve the application for probation. By allowing the temporary liberty of the accused even before the order to submit the case study and report, respondent Judge unceremoniously extended the pro tem discharge of the accused to the detriment of the prosecution and the private complainants. (Emphasis supplied) As to the argument of Judge Floro that his Orders for the release of an accused on recognizance need not be in writing as these are duly reflected in the transcript of stenographic notes, we refer to Echaus v. Court of Appeals 50 wherein we held that "no judgment, or order whether final or interlocutory, has juridical existence until and unless it is set down in writing, signed and promulgated, i.e., delivered by the Judge to the Clerk of Court for filing, release to the parties and implementation." Obviously, then, Judge Floro was remiss in his duties as judge when he did not reduce into writing his orders for the release on recognizance of the accused in Criminal Cases No. 20384, 20371, 202426 and 20442 entitled, "People v. Luisito Beltran," "People v. Emma Alvarez, et al.," "People v. Rowena Camino," and "People v. John Richie Villaluz." 51 From his explanation that such written orders are not necessary, we can surmise that Judge Floro’s failure was not due to inadvertence or negligence on his part but to ignorance of a procedural rule.
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