BANKING.docx

Uncleared foreign checks in complete disregard of

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uncleared foreign checks in complete disregard of existing banking regulations, that was subsequently returned by the drawee bank as a fraudulent foreign check, thus causing undue injury to complainant PNB in the total sum of P4,000,000.00. CONTRARY TO LAW. Upon arraignment, Raymundo entered a plea of not guilty to the charge. He waived his right to a pre-trial, and trial on the merits ensued. After trial, the RTC rendered the Decision dated December 4, 2009, the dispositive portion of which reads: In light of the foregoing, it is very clear that the prosecution failed to establish the guilt of accused Pablo V. Raymundo beyond reasonable doubt for the crime charged. Consequently, accused Pablo V. Raymundo is hereby acquitted of the charge of Violation of Sec. 3(e), R.A. 3019. No costs. SO ORDERED.
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The RTC held that it would be too harsh and inequitable to impose criminal liability upon Raymundo, who approved the withdrawal because of his belief that the checks were funded, due to the absence of the stamp mark "Returned Check'' on the checks, and check return slips. Considering that Raymundo's duties as Branch Manager entailed a lot of responsibility, the RTC found it almost unreasonable to expect him to directly and personally check the books of accounts of each particular client every time a check is presented to the bank for payment and for his approval. The RTC stressed that it has been established that the responsibility to go over the account records of clients falls on the bookkeeper, and Raymundo's act of relying upon the bookkeeper's verification that the checks were good cannot be deemed gross and inexcusable negligence. Aggrieved, the PNB appealed from the civil aspect of the RTC Decision which acquitted Raymundo of the charge of violation of Section 3(e) of R.A. No. 3019. In a Decision dated May 31, 2013, the CA denied the PNB's appeal for lack of merit. In a Resolution dated August 14, 2013, it also denied the PNB's motion for reconsideration for lack of merit. It ruled that Raymundo acted in good faith in relying upon his subordinates, i.e. , the bookkeeper and accountant, who were primarily assigned with the task of clearing the checks and ensuring that they are sufficiently funded. It held that he has no duty to go beyond the verification of the documents submitted by the bookkeeper and the accountant, and to personally authenticate the procedures taken. It added that considering that his duties as Branch Manager entails a lot of responsibility, it is unreasonable to require him to accomplish and direct a personal examination of the records of the account of each particular client before affixing his signature on the documents as approving authority. Dissatisfied, the PNB filed this petition for review on certiorari , arguing that the CA committed serious errors, namely: (1) when it ruled that the trial court aptly concluded that there was lack of malice or bad faith, nor negligence on the part of Raymundo in approving the payment of
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