ARTURO CABARON and BRIGIDA CABARON, petitioners,
PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES and SANDIGANBAYAN, respondents.
[G.R. No. 156981. October 09, 2009]
Petitioners were charged of grave threats, extortion, bribery, dereliction of duty and violations of R.A. 3019 and R.A. 6713 before the Deputy Ombudsman by a certain Richter Pacfico. The Ombudsman then filed the information with the Sandiganbayan for violation of Section 7(d) of R.A. No. 6713. Sandiganbayan issued warrants of arrest against petitioner who later voluntarily surrendered. Sandiganbayan found the petitioners guilty beyond reasonable doubt. Petitioners filed motion for reconsideration but the ruling was sustained, with only modification applying indeterminate sentence. Petitioners filed a petition for review on certiorari before SC, alleging, among others, that the Sandiganbayan erred (1) in overlooking the fact that the case was merely a harassment case x x x; (2) in relying on the testimonies of Pacifico x x x; and (3) in not giving weight to the testimonies of defense witnesses x x x. The petition was denied. Petitioners moved to reconsider.
(1) Whether or not petitioners may raise “question of facts” under Rule 45 before the Supreme Court.
(1) No. It is settled that the appellate jurisdiction of the Supreme Court over decisions and final orders of the Sandiganbayan is limited only to questions of law; it does not review the factual findings of the Sandiganbayan which, as a rule, are conclusive upon the Court. A question of law exists when there is doubt or controversy as to what the law is on a certain state of facts. On the other hand, a question of fact exists when the doubt or controversy arises as to the truth or falsity of the alleged facts. The resolution of a question of fact necessarily involves a calibration of the evidence, the credibility of the witnesses, the existence and the relevance of surrounding circumstances, and the probability of specific situations. The Sandiganbayan rulings in this case suffer no such infirmities, notwithstanding the efforts of the petitioners to create a contrary impression.