Republic of the Philippines
SUPREME COURT
Manila

SECOND DIVISION

 

A.C. No. 203-CJ May 29, 1975

PABLO MARCOS, complainant,
vs.
CITY JUDGE ANDRES DOMINGO, and AUXILIARY CITY JUDGE GUILLERMO M. PASION, respondents.

R E S O L U T I O N


FERNANDO, J.:+.wph!1

This Court, especially so after Gutierrez v. Santos,1 has ever been on the alert to avoid bias or prejudice tainting the actuations of a judge. The administrative complaint in this case was based on such surmise. More specifically, respondent City Judge Andres Domingo and former Auxiliary City Judge Guillermo Pasion, both of Laoag City, were accused of partiality. The matter was referred to Executive Judge Manuel V. Romillo, Jr. of the Court of First Instance of Ilocos Norte for investigation, report and recommendation. On March 15, 1973, he issued the following order: "Upon a clear showing that the alleged complainant Pablo Marcos has persistently refused to be served with the subpoena in connection with the hearing set for this date so that he may come before this Court, first to swear to the truth of his complaint and thereafter to testify and prove the allegations contained therein, the Court is, therefore, not in a position to proceed with the investigation inasmuch as there is nothing to investigate, the alleged complaint not being under oath. [In view of all the foregoing], the Court is constrained to [dismiss] the complaint ... ."2 This Court did not perfunctorily accept such recommendation. It was not enough that the complaint against the two respondent judges be dismissed due to the persistent refusal of complainant Pablo Marcos to be served with a subpoena in connection with a hearing. It took pains to inquire into the truth of the charge that notwithstanding the allegation that respondent Judge Guillermo Pasion is a near relative of one of the parties, Aurora Pasion Arce, who lived in a house owned by respondent Judge Andres Domingo, they did not disqualify themselves in a pending case. It is to be noted that there was a denial by both respondents, to which Judge Romillo lent credence. The matter was referred to the Judicial Consultant, Manuel P. Barcelona. He is of the view that the dismissal of the complaint is warranted. He would stress the conduct of the complainant himself who had consistently declined to accept even the service of a subpoena so that he could appear at the investigation to enable him to prove whether the charges were in fact meritorious. It would appear that under the circumstances, no other conclusion is warranted.

WHEREFORE, the charges against City Judge Andres E. Domingo and former Auxiliary Judge Guillermo Pasion are dismissed.

Barredo, Antonio, Aquino and Concepcion, Jr., JJ., concur.1wph1.t

 

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1 L-15824, May 20, 1961, 2 SCRA 249. Subsequently thirteen cases, the latest of which is Castillo v. Juan, L-39516, Jan. 28, 1975, followed the principle there announced.

2 Order of Executive Judge Manuel v. Romillo, dated March 15, 1973.


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