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[US v. BLAS MORO](http://lawyerly.ph/juris/view/cdfd?user=fbGU2WFpmaitMVEVGZ2lBVW5xZ2RVdz09)
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[ GR No. 5566, Feb 15, 1910 ]

US v. BLAS MORO +

DECISION

15 Phil. 206

[ G. R. No. 5566, February 15, 1910 ]

THE UNITED STATES, PLAINTIFF AND APPELLEE, VS. BLAS MORO, DEFENDANT AND APPELLANT.

D E C I S I O N

CARSON, J.:

The guilt of the accused of the crime  of arson of which he was convicted is conclusively established by the testimony  of the witnesses for the prosecution, if that testimony  be worthy of belief.  There are  certain matters in the record which tend to disclose the possibility that these witnesses may have  been procured to testify falsely by  the complaining witness, a Chinese, whose house was  burned, but there is nothing in the record upon which this  court could base a finding to that effect or that the testimony of these witnesses is in fact  untrue.  The court below must have  been fully aware of  the possibility of the existence of a conspiracy between the complaining witness and others to establish the theory of the prosecution, that the defendant,  a mere boy, burned the  building of the complaining witness at the instigation  of another Chinese,  an enemy of the Chinese whose building was destroyed, and yet  the trial judge was of opinion, after hearing these  witnesses testify,  that  their  testimony was  worthy  of belief, and established the guilt of the  accused  beyond a reasonable doubt.  We can not say that the record does not sustain the finding of  fact by the trial judge, and we find no errors in the proceedings prejudicial to the rights of the accused.

The trial court in imposing the penalty took  into consideration the race and lack of mental and moral instruction of  the accused as an extenuating circumstance, under the provisions of article 11 of the Penal  Code, for the purpose  of compensating the aggravating circumstance of nocturnity.  The Attorney-General, in his brief upon  appeal, contends that the crime being one "against property," the convict should not be given the benefit of the provisions of article 11, and supports his contention by citing the decisions  of this court in the  cases  of  The United States vs. Villanueva (9 Phil. Rep., 94), The United States vs. Pascual (9 Phil. Rep.,  491),  and The United States vs. Cortes (12 Phil. Rep., 309) ; but while it is true that this court has uniformly declined to apply the provisions of article 11 so as to secure to a convict the benefit  of the extenuating circumstance of race in cases of simple robbery, and generally in cases of  robbery, theft, and estafa, so that it  may be said that as a  general  rule the  provisions of this article should not be applied in cases of ""crimes against property" of this class, yet the rule should not be extended  further, and in each case where  the defendant  has been convicted of one of the many other  classes of crimes against property, it is the duty of the court, in the exercise of its sound discretion, to apply or to refrain from the application of the provisions of this article with due regard to the particular circumstances of the case under consideration.

The judgment of conviction and the sentence imposed by the trial court  should  be affirmed, with the costs of this instance against the appellant.  So ordered.

Arellano, C. J., Torres, Mapa, Moreland, and Elliott, JJ., concur.

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