PEOPLE vs SORIA G.R. No. 179031, November 14, 2012

Facts:
“AAA”after eating, went to the bedroom to rest. Thereafter, appellant entered the room and positioned himself on top of “AAA”, took off her clothes and inserted his penis into her vagina. “AAA” felt intense pain from her breast down to her vagina and thus told her father that it was painful. At that point, appellant apologized to his daughter, stood up, and left the room. This whole incident was witnessed by “AAA’s” brother, “BBB”. The trial court rendered its Judgment finding appellant guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the crime of rape against “AAA”, his daughter of minor age, as charged in the Information. While the appellate court was convinced that appellant raped “AAA”, it nevertheless noted the prosecution’s failure to present her birth certificate as competent proof of her minority. Thus, the CA concluded that the crime committed by appellant against his daughter was only simple rape and accordingly modified the penalty imposed by the trial court from death to reclusion perpetua. Still insisting on his innocence, appellant comes to this Court through this appeal.

Issue:
Whether the information against the accused for the crime of Rape is sufficient

Held:
Yes, The Information stated that appellant inserted his penis into the genital of “AAA,” which constituted rape by sexual intercourse under the first paragraph of Article 266-A. At the same time, the Information alleged that appellant used force and intimidation to commit an act of sexual assault. While these allegations cause ambiguity, they only pertain to the mode or manner of how the rape was committed and the same do not invalidate the Information or result in the automatic dismissal of the case. “[W]here an offense may be committed in any of the different modes and the offense is alleged to have been committed in two or more modes specified, the indictment is sufficient, notwithstanding the fact that the different means of committing the same offense are prohibited by separate sections of the statute. The allegation in the information of the various ways of committing the offense should be regarded as a description of only one offense and the information is not thereby rendered defective on the ground of multifariousness.”17 Any objection from the appellant with respect to the Information is held to have been waived failing any effort to oppose the same before trial.18 He therefore can be convicted of rape through sexual intercourse or rape by sexual assault, depending on the evidence adduced during trial.

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