Laurel vs. Misa
Laurel vs. Misa 77 Phil. 856
FACTS: The accused was charged with treason. During the Japanese occupation, the accused adhered to the enemy by giving the latter aid and comfort. He claims that he cannot be tried for treason since his allegiance to the Philippines was suspended at that time. Also, he claims that he cannot be tried under a change of sovereignty over the country since his acts were against the Commonwealth which was replaced already by the Republic. HELD/RATIO: The accused was found guilty. A citizen owes absolute and permanent allegiance to his government or sovereign. No transfer of sovereignty was made; hence, it is presumed that the Philippine government still had the power. Moreover, sovereignty cannot be suspended; it is either subsisting or eliminated and replaced. Sovereignty per se wasn’t suspended; rather, it was the exercise of sovereignty that was suspended. Thus, there is no suspended allegiance. Regarding the change of government, there is no such change since the sovereign – the Filipino people – is still the same. What happened was a mere change of name of government, from Commonwealth to the Republic of the Philippines. DISSENT: During the long period of Japanese occupation, all the political laws of the Philippines were suspended. Thus, treason under the Revised Penal Code cannot be punishable where the laws of the land are momentarily halted. Regarding the change of sovereignty, it is true that the Philippines wasn’t sovereign at the time of the Commonwealth since it was under the United States. Hence, the acts of treason done cannot carry over to the new Republic where the Philippines is now indeed sovereign.
ZACARIAS VILLAVICENCIO, ET AL.,
JUSTO LUKBAN, ET AL.,
respondents. March 25, 1919
Facts: Justo Lukban, who was then the Mayor of the City of Manila, ordered the deportation of 170 prostitutes to Davao. His reason for doing so was to preserve the morals...