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[ GR No. L-12231, Dec 29, 1959 ]



106 Phil. 793

[ G. R. No. L-12231, December 29, 1959 ]




This is an appeal from a judgment of the  Court of First Instance of Manila dismissing the petitioner's complaint that prays for the issuance of a writ of preliminary- injunction to enjoin  the respondent  from  forfeiting  a cash bond of P10,000  filed by the petitioner for his wife Wong Woon  Pun alias  Ong  Siu and  P4,000 for his son Ang Hua; requiring new cash bonds in the same amounts to suspend the enforcement of the respondent's order for their  arrest and confinement; and carrying out the said order of arrest and confinement should they fail  to file the cash bonds demanded  within 48  hours from 22 November 1955;  and after  hearing, for judgment declaring null  and void  the  respondent's order forfeiting in favor of the  Government the  said  cash   bonds filed  by  the petitioner for  his wife and son; making final the writ of preliminary injunction to be issued; ordering the respondent to pay the petitioner the  sum  of  P5,000  for  moral damages and P1,000 for attorney's fee;  and granting him other just and equitable relief and remedy (civil No. 28274).

The facts, as gathered from the pleadings, stipulation of facts  and  documentary  evidence   filed  and  submitted by the parties, are: The  appellant applied to the appellee for temporary  admission  into the Philippines  under  the provisions  of  section 9,  Commonwealth  Act No. 613,  of his wife Ong  Siu  and son Ang Hua.  On 27 June 1955 the appellant  executed in favor of  and  filed with  the Bureau of  Immigration cash bonds  in  the total  sum  of P14,000  to guarantee the faithful  compliance  by  the visitors of the terms and conditions of their temporary stay in the Philippines.  On 1 August 1955 the appellant's wife and son  arrived in the Philippines from  Hongkong on board a plane  of the  Philippine  Air Lines and were granted by the Commissioner of Immigration a period of three months  temporary stay in the Philippines from  1 August to 1 November  1955.  On 1 October 1955 Attorney Jose R. Abalos wrote to the Secretary for Foreign Affairs, coursing it through  the  appellee,  requesting that  the temporary  stay of  the  two  visistors  be  extended  for another three months.  On 7 November 1955 the appellee wrote to the appellant reminding him that the authorized temporary  stay of  the two visitors  already had expired on  1  November  1955, requiring him,  as bondsman,  to effect their departure not  later  than 12 November 1955, and enclosing  a copy of the letter of the Undersecretary for  Foreign Affairs dated 29  October 1955, where the latter  suggested  that, as  a matter of policy, the mere filing  of  petitions for extension  of  stay  of temporary visitors be not considered  as  a reason for  allowing them to stay beyond the period actually authorized and that in cases where the Dapartment of Foreign  Affairs should state that the same would be the last extension  to  be granted the  alien  concerned,  no  further petitions  be accepted or coursed by that Bureau to that Department; and requested the cooperation of the Bureau  of Immigration by taking appropriate steps to effect  the departure of  all those whose authorized  stay already  had expired regardless of whether they had filed  petitions for extension, if such petitions had  not been acted upon on the last day of their  authorized  stay.  On  10 November  1955 the  appellant wrote to the appellee  requesting that the temporary  stay of  the  two  visitors  be extended  to  30 November because he and  his wife had to wind up family affairs in  Manila and that he had to  prepare for  their airplane booking  and necessary  bank  licenses.  On the same date,  10  November, the appellee denied his request. On 11 November  1955 the appellant wrote  to the appellee acknowledging receipt  of  his  letter  dated 7  November 1955,  reiterating  his request  for  a few days extension of  the visitors'  temporary stay and promising not  to ask for further extension.  He assured the appellee that should they fail to depart from the country at the expiration of the period of grace  granted,  the  appellee  could confiscate the  bonds he  had  filed.  On the  same date, 11  November, Jose R. Abalos,  counsel for  the appellant, wrote  to the appellee requesting  for  extension up  to  18 November  1955 of the visitors' temporary stay.   On  14 November 1955 the appellee granted the appellant's request for extension tip to 19 November 1955 within which  to cause the departure of the two temporary visitors.  On 16  November 1955, Attorney  Apolonio A. Gonzalez,  in behalf of the  two visitors, wrote to  the  Secretary for Foreign  Affairs  requesting for  three  months  extension of their  temporary stay.   On 17 November 1955,  in  his indorsement to  the  appellee,  the Secretary for Foreign Affairs authorized the temporary stay of the two visitors for another  three  months from  the expiration of  the period of their original  authorized  stay, provided that their  reentry permits to  Hongkong continue to  be valid at least  one month over and  beyond their extended stay and provided that the cash bonds  filed  with the Bureau of Immigration in their  behalf be  maintained.  On  22 November 1955 the appellee  wrote to the appellant  advising him that  the  Secretary  for Foreign Affairs had granted  Attorney Apolonio A.  Gonzales, request  for a three months extension  of the two visitors'  temporary stay, but that the cash bonds filed by him (the  appellant) in favor of the  Bureau of Immigration in their  behalf were  declared forfeited in favor of the  Government  for violation of the terms and conditions thereof  in asking for extension of their temporary stay and in  failing to depart from  the Philippines  on  19 November 1955,  the date set for their departure by the appellee; and requiring him to file new cash  bonds in the  same amounts for  the visitors within  48 hours  from receipt of notice.  On 25 November 1955  the law firm  of Gianzon, Uy and  Calma wrote  to the  appellee requesting extension  up  to  30 November  1955  within which  to  raise  the  amount to put up the cash bonds or to avail of other remedies under the circumstances.  On 26 November 1955  the  appellee granted the appellant's request and postponed the issuance of warrants for the arrest of the visistors until 30 November 1955, but required him (the appellant) to file the cash bonds of P14,000 before that date or cause  them to leave the country on  said date.   On 9  December 1955 the appellant filed an additional cash bond of P3,000 for  the temporary stay of the visitors  up to  their departure on 7 January 1956.  On the last mentioned date  the two visitors departed from the Philippines.

Section 40, paragraph (a), sub-paragraph (1), Commonwealth Act No. 613, provides that "The Commissioner of Immigration shall have the power to exact bonds in such amounts and containing such conditions as he may prescribe" " to control and regulate the admission into, and departure from, the philippines of aliens applying for temporary admission." The cash bonds filed by the appellant in behalf of the temporary visitors, which embody the same terms and conditions, partly provide;
WHEAREAS, the undersigned ANG LIONG has applied to the Commissioner of Immigration of the temporary admission into the Philippines under Section 9, of the Philippine Immigration Act of 1940, as amended, of one ONG SIU, Chinese female, 35 years of age, a passenger of the ..................due to arrive/ who arrived at the port of Manila, on...................................., 195.....I, C. No.................................;

AND WHEREAS, the Commissioner of Immigration has agreed to the temporary stay of said ONG SIU upon filing a cash bond of TEN THOUSAND PESOS, Phil. Currency, with the Bureau of Immigration (Official Receipt No. A-0382921, dated June 27, 1955), (P10,000.00), which cash bond is subject to the following conditions:

(a) That the undersigned, with full knowledge that ONG SIU is a temporary visitor whose authorized stay in this country is limited only up to (status) and including 3 months, 195........, do hereby undertake that said ONG SIU will actually depart from the Philippines on or before said date so specified, or within such period, as in his discretion, the Commissioner of Immigration or his authorized representative may properly allow;

(a-1) That the undersigned hereby guarantees that no request for extension of the original authorized stay of three (3) months will be filed by him, the alien himself/herself or any other person in his or her behalf;

*    *    *    *    *    *    *    *

That breach of any of the conditions above-mentioned shall entitle the Commissioner of Immigration to declare this cash bond or part thereof forfeited, but shall not release the undersigned from the obligation to produce said ONG SIU for such action as may be taken against him/her.  no modification of this agreement shall be valid and effective unless made in writing and  signed  by  the  Commissioner  of Immigration or his duly authorized representative.
Paragraphs (a) (a-1)  of the  terms and conditions  of the bonds filed by the appellant in behalf of the two temporary visitors were violated because instead of departing  from the Philippines on 19 November 1955, the date set by the  appellee for their departure, on 16 November 1955 Attorney Apolonio A. Gonzales requested the Secretary for Foreign Affairs in their behalf to authorize  an extension of three months of their temporary stay from the expiration of the period of their original authorized  temporary stay, which request was granted under the terms and conditions  stated in an indorsement dated 17 November  1955. Hence the appellee was justified in declaring the bonds forfeited for violation of the terms thereof.

Appellant's claim that the extensions sought by Attorney Jose R. Abalos on 1  October 1955, before  the  expiration of the original period, and by Attorney Apolonio A. Gonzales on 16 November 1955, in behalf of the two visitors, from  the Secretary for  Foreign Affairs, are not violative of the terms and conditions of the bonds  and of the appellant's promise made in his letter dated 11 November 1955 not to  ask for further  extensions,  is without  merit and does not alter  the fact that the terms of the bond  were violated because of their failure to depart from the  Philippines on 19 November 1955, the date set by the appellee for their departure, and for that  reason  the forfeiture of the bonds, as already  stated, was justified.

The fact that the Secretary for  Foreign Affairs granted their request for another three months extension from the expiration  of  the original  authorized  period  of  their temporary  stay  does  not relieve  the  appellant  from liability on the bonds  for violation of  their terms and conditions.  His undertakings in the bonds guaranteeing "that no request  for extension of the original authorized stay of three (3) months will be filed by him,  the  alien himself/herself or any other person in his or her behalf" and to effect  their  departure  upon expiration of  their authorized  period of temporary  stay,  or within  such period at the discretion of the Commissioner of Immigration  or  his authorized  representative may  allow, are contractual, and the Secretary for  Foreign Affairs cannot "alter, vary  or modify them.   Commonwealth Act No. 613 governs the entry of aliens into the Philippines:  Under section 3  of the same  Act, the Commissioner  is the administrative  head of the Bureau of Immigration and in charge of the  administration of all  laws  relating to the immigration of aliens into the Philippines.  Under section 47  of the same Act, when  public interest so warrants, the  President  of  the Philippines  may "admit, as  non- immigrants, aliens  not  otherwise provided for  by this Act, who are coming for temporary period only, under such conditions as he may prescribe."  The Secretary for Foreign Affairs is not authorized to  admit into the  Philippines aliens for temporary stay, or  extend the period authorized by the  Commissioner of Immigration for  their stay in the  Philippines.

The letter dated 15 September  1954 of the Executive Secretary to the  Secretary for  Foreign  Affairs,  quoted in full by the  appellant on pages 45 to 46 of his brief, which does not form part  of the  stipulation of  facts entered into by and  between the parties, where the Secretary for Foreign  Affairs was informed that the  Cabinet at its meeting decided that "requests  for extension beyond the three-month period under the Cabinet  policy embodied in the letter of this Office dated March 22,  1954 from  those who have been admitted  to the Philippines as  temporary visitors,"  "should  be  considered and acted upon by the Department of Foreign Affairs, along with the power to process and approve applications for  entry of aliens under established  categories," did not and  does  not deprive the Commissioner of Immigration of his powers to declare a bond forfeited for  violation or breach  of its terms or conditions.  The Secretary for  Foreign  Affairs was merely authorized by the Cabinet to act upon requests from temporary  visitors for extension of their stay beyond three months, and such authority did not relieve the bondsman from the  liability for breach of the terms  and conditions of the bonds.

The judgment  appealed from is  affirmed,  with  costs against the appellant.

Paras,  C. J., Bautista Angelo,  Labrador, Concepcion, Reyes, J.  B. L., Endencia, Barrera, and Gutierrez David, JJ., concur.