Presidential Degree

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PRESIDENTIAL DECREE No. 968 July 24, 1976
ESTABLISHING A PROBATION SYSTEM, APPROPRIATING FUNDS THEREFOR AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES WHEREAS, one of the major goals of the government is to establish a more enlightened and humane correctional systems that will promote the reformation of offenders and thereby reduce the incidence of recidivism; WHEREAS, the confinement of all offenders prisons and other institutions with rehabilitation programs constitutes an onerous drain on the financial resources of the country; and WHEREAS, there is a need to provide a less costly alternative to the imprisonment of offenders who are likely to respond to individualized, community-based treatment programs; NOW, THEREFORE, I, FERDINAND E. MARCOS, President of the Philippines, by virtue of the powers vested in me by the Constitution, do hereby order and decree the following: Section 1. Title and Scope of the Decree. This Decree shall be known as the Probation Law of 1976. It shall apply to all offenders except those entitled to the benefits under the provisions of Presidential Decree numbered Six Hundred and three and similar laws. Section 2. Purpose. This Decree shall be interpreted so as to: (a) promote the correction and rehabilitation of an offender by providing him with individualized treatment; (b) provide an opportunity for the reformation of a penitent offender which might be less probable if he were to serve a prison sentence; and (c) prevent the commission of offenses.

Section 3. Meaning of Terms. As used in this Decree, the following shall, unless the context otherwise requires, be construed thus: (a) "Probation" is a disposition under which a defendant, after conviction and sentence, is released subject to conditions imposed by the court and to the supervision of a probation officer. (b) "Probationer" means a person placed on probation.

(c) "Probation Officer" means one who investigates for the court a referral for probation or supervises a probationer or both. Section 4. Grant of Probation. Subject to the provisions of this Decree, the court may, after it shall have convicted and sentenced a defendant and upon application at any time of said defendant, suspend the execution of said sentence and place the defendant on probation for such period and upon such terms and conditions as it may deem best. Probation may be granted whether the sentence imposes a term of imprisonment or a fine only. An application for probation shall be filed with the trial court, with notice to the appellate court if an appeal has been taken from the sentence of conviction. The filing of the application shall be deemed a waver of the right to appeal, or the automatic withdrawal of a pending appeal. An order granting or denying probation shall not be appealable. Section 5. Post-sentence Investigation. No person shall be placed on probation except upon prior investigation by the probation officer and a determination by the court that the ends of justice and the best interest of the public as well as that of the defendant will be served thereby. Section 6. Form of Investigation Report. The investigation report to be submitted by the probation officer under Section 5 hereof shall be in the form prescribed by the Probation Administrator and approved by the Secretary of Justice. Section 7. Period for Submission of Investigation Report. The probation officer shall submit to the court the investigation report on a defendant not later than sixty days from receipt of the order of said court to conduct the investigation. The court shall resolve the petition for probation not later than five days after receipt of said report. Pending submission of the investigation report and the resolution of the petition, the defendant may be allowed on temporary liberty under his bail filed in the criminal case; Provided, That, in case where no bail was filed or that the defendant is incapable of filing one, the court may allow the release of the defendant on recognize the custody of...
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