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crime of illegal possession of firearm andsentencing him to ten (10) years and one (1)day of prision mayor as minimum to fourteen(14) years, eight (8) months and one (1) dayof reclusion temporal as maximum, and inCriminal Case No. 92-1384, finding
appellant and accused guilty of the crime ofhomicide with the use of an unlicensedfirearm, sentencing them to the penaltyof reclusion perpetua.On September 1,1992, at around 11:30 in the evening AmadoGuina,Joe Mari Tamargo and Peter Castrowere on board a public utility jeepney alongTaft Avenue (pp. 19-20, TSN, January 12,1993) coming from Buendia bound forManila. They had just come from their workin a marble works company at Megamall inEDSA. The jeepney was fully loaded withpassengers (p. 8, ibid). Amado was seatedon one side at the rear portion of thejeepney directly facing Joe Mari and Peterwho were seated at the other side of thejeepney. When the jeep was cruising nearthe San Isidro Church in Pasay City,appellant, who was seated immediately nextto the right of Amado, suddenly, announceda hold-up (whispering do not move, this is ahold up. Appellant was holding a gun.Amado moved both of his hands as hewanted to resist and appellant, upon seeingthis, immediately fired the gun at Amado. Acommotion ensued inside the jeepneyduring which time appellant and hiscompanion, Jaime Tolibas, fled from thescene. Can the appellant be convicted of thecrime murder?Answer: As to the crime or crimes committed byappellant, the peculiar circumstances of the case led tothe filing of two cases, both involving illegal possessionof firearms. The trial court convicted appellant of illegalpossession in Criminal Case No. 92-1382 and bothappellant and accused of the crime of illegal possessionin its aggravated form under Criminal Case No. 92-1384.However, the passage of Republic Act No. 8294,whichlowered the penalties for illegal possession, haschanged the legal scenario for appellant. Beingbeneficial to appellant who is not a habitual criminal,R.A. No. 8294 should be considered in his favor. UnderSection 1, third paragraph of R.A. No. 8294, and asinterpreted by the Court in People v. Molina andsubsequent cases,if homicide or murder is committedwith the use of an unlicensed firearm, only the offense ofhomicide or murder is committed, and the use of theunlicensed firearm should be considered as anaggravating circumstance. An examination of theallegations in the Information reveals that all theelements of homicide were sufficiently alleged andproven during trial. However, the Information did notallege any of the circumstances which would qualify thecrime to murder. Hence, appellant can only be convictedof the crime of homicide. People vs. TagubaOn August 10, 1996 and prior thereto, atBrgy. Maitim, Municipality of Bay, Provinceof Laguna and within the jurisdiction of thisHonorable Court, the accused above-namedbeing then the stepfather and guardian andwhile armed with a bolo, by means of force,violence and intimidation and with lewddesigns, did then and there wilfully,
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Ulysses, Appellate court, Legal burden of proof, Trial court, Rights of the accused