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PERALTA vs.

THE DIRECTOR OF PRISONS


November 12, 1945 | Feria, J |

PETITIONER: William F. Peralta


RESPONDENTS: The Director of Prisons
SUMMARY:

DOCTRINE:

FACTS:
● Peralta was a member of the Metropolitan Constabulary of Manila. He was in charge of the
supervision and control of the production, procurement and distribution of goods and other
necessaries defined in Sec. 1 of Act No. 9 of the National Assembly of the Philippines
● Peralta was found guilty and sentenced to life imprisonment for the crime of robbery
penalized by Sec 2(a) of Act No. 65 of the same Assembly which he commenced to serve on
August 21, 1944 by the Court of Special and Exclusive Criminal Jurisdiction (CSECJ)
● The CSECJ was created in Sec 1 of Ordinance No. 7, promulgated by the President
● The petition for habeas corpus was filed based on the ground that (1) Ordinance No. 7 should
be null and void because CSECJ is a political a political instrumentality of the military
forces of the Japanese Imperial Army that is repugnant to the aims of the Commonwealth
of the Philippines ; (2) that Ordinance No. 7 violates the fundamental laws of the
Commonwealth of the Philippines and (3) "the petitioner has been deprived of his
constitutional rights"; (4) that the petitioner is being punished by a law created to serve
the political purpose of the Japanese Imperial Army in the Philippines, and (5) "that the
penalties provided for are more severe than the penalties provided for in the Revised
Penal Code."
● The City of Fiscal of Manila submitted a memorandum that the petition for habeas corpus be
denied because (1) the CSECJ and the laws creating it are not of political complexion because
it was created in response to an urgent necessity; (2) that the right to appeal in a criminal case
it not a constitutional right; (3) and that the summary procedure established in Ordinance No.
7 does not violate Art. III, Sec 1(18) of the Constitution of the Commonwealth.

ISSUE: Whether or not the creation of CSECJ under Ordinance No. 7 is constitutional? YES.

HELD:
● In view of all the foregoing, the writ of habeas corpus prayed for is hereby granted and it is
ordered that the petitioner be released forthwith, without pronouncement as to costs. So
ordered.

RATIONALE: