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Villaber vs COMELEC
GR NO. 148326
Both petitioner Pablo Villaber and respondent Douglas R. Cougas were rival candidate for a congressional seat in the First District of Davao Del Sur dating the May 14, 2001 elections. Villaber filed his Certificate of Candidacy (COC) for Congressman on Feb. 1, 2001 file Cagas filed his on Feb. 28, 2001. On March 4 , 2001, Cagas filed with the Office of the Provincial Election Supervisor, COMELEC, Davao Del Sur, a consolidated petition to disqualify Villaber and to cancel the latter COC. Cagas alleged in the said consolidated petition that on March 2, 1990, Villaber was convicted by the RTC of Manila for violation of Batas Pambansa Blg.22 and was sentenced to suffer 1 year imprisonment. The check that bounced was in the sum of P100,00.00. Cagas further alleged that this crime involves moral turpitude; hence under Section 12 of the Omnibus Election Code (OEC), he is disqualified to run for any public office. In his answer to the disqualification suit, Villaber countered mainly that his conviction has not become final and executory because the affirmed Decision was not remanded to the trial court for promulgation in his presence. Further, even if the judgment of conviction was already final and executory, it cannot be the basis for his disqualification since violation of B.P. Blg. 22 does not involve moral turpitude.
Whether or not violation of B.P. Blg. 22 involves moral turpitude.
Yes, violation of B.P. Blg. 22 involves moral turpitude, because its violation imports deceit and certainly relates to and affects the good moral character of a person. A drawer who issues an unfunded check deliberately reneges on his private duties he owes his fellow men or society in a manner contract to accepted and customary rule of right and duty, justice, honesty, or good morals.