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People v Dumlao
580 SCRA 409
Dumlao was charged with violation of the anti graft and corrupt practices act. The information was filed in the Sandiganbayan. After pretrial Dumlao filed a motion to quash of the ground that the facts charged does not constitute an offense. Dumlao filed a motion to quash on the ground that the facts alleged did not constitute an offense. He averred that the prosecution’s main thrust against him was the alleged approval by the GSIS Board of the said contract. He contended that it was never approved as the signatures of his fellow respondents did not appear in the minutes of meeting therefor, proving their non-participation therein. Additionally, there was no board quorum during that time to push through with the approval thereof. Hence, since the evidence of the prosecution was insufficient, he should be deemed innocent. The Sandiganbayan considered the evidences presented in pretrial and held that there is no cause of action, and dismissed the case.
Whether the insufficiency of evidence is a ground for motion to quash.
No, Insufficiency of evidence is not one of the grounds of a Motion to Quash. The grounds, as enumerated in Section 3, Rule 117 of the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure, From the reasoning given by the Sandiganbayan, it is clear that it dismissed the case because of insufficiency of evidence. Insufficiency of evidence is not one of the grounds of a Motion to Quash (Section 3, Rule 117). Insufficiency of evidence is a ground for dismissal of an action only after the prosecution rests its case. (Section 23, Rule 119, Demurrer to Evidence)
In the case under consideration, the Sandiganbayan dismissed the case against respondent for insufficiency of evidence, even without giving the prosecution the opportunity to present its evidence. It was therefore erroneous for the Sandiganbayan to dismiss the case under the premises. Not only did it not consider the ground invoked by respondent Dumlao; it even dismissed the case on a ground not raised by him, and not at the appropriate time. The dismissal was thus without basis and untimely.
prosecution’s right to due process. It deprived the prosecution of its opportunity to prosecute its case and to prove the accused’s culpability.