Application of probation

September 4, 2022

Dear Atty. Angela,

A former business partner filed a criminal case against my husband for “Other Deceits” under Article 318 of the Revised Penal Code. He claimed my husband deceived him and also failed to honor a promise to return P200,000. The court found my husband guilty and sentenced him to imprisonment from two to four months. Likewise, the court ordered him to pay a fine, and the cost of the litigation in the amount of P200,000. It was the first time he faced a court proceeding. We are willing to pay the fine and civil aspect but I cannot accept that my husband will go to prison even for just a few months. Should we appeal this or is there any other legal remedy? Please help.



Dear Claire,

Fortunately, your husband is entitled to avail of the legal remedy of Probation. This is the privilege granted by law to a person convicted of a criminal offense to remain in the community instead of actually going to prison. There are conditions imposed by the court where the offender shall be under the supervision of a probation officer.

Any sentenced offender, not disqualified, can apply for probation before serving a prison sentence and this must be filed with the trial court that rendered judgment within 15 days after promulgation.

According to Presidential Decree No. 968 or the Probation Law, to be entitled, a convicted offender should not have the following disqualifications: (a) sentenced to serve a maximum term of imprisonment of more than six years; (b) convicted of any offense against the security of the State; (c) who have previously been convicted by final judgment of an offense punished by imprisonment of not less than one month and one day and/or a fine of not less than P200; (d) who have been once on probation under the provisions of this Decree; and (e) who are already serving sentence at the time the substantive provisions of this Decree became applicable pursuant to Section 33 hereof.

As regards appealing the case, be reminded that to appeal the decision, he would forfeit and waive his right to probation as these are mutually exclusive options. If he loses in the appeal, he will be serving the full sentence as judged by the court. In view of this, I would recommend that your husband avail of probation so he will not have to serve the prison sentence and will only have to report to a probation officer for a prescribed period of time.

Atty. Angela Antonio

Read more Daily Tribune stories at:

Follow us on social media
Facebook: @tribunephl
Youtube: TribuneNow
Twitter: @tribunephl
Instagram: @tribunephl
TikTok: @dailytribuneofficial