Petitioner filed a complaint against private respondent on the Behest Loan they took out with PNB in 1968. It appears from the foregoing facts and circumstances on record that the provisions of Section 3 (e) and (g) of RA 3019 among other laws, were violated. Petitioner filed the complaint in the Ombudsman which it dismissed the complaint on the grounds of prescription. Petitioner elevated the case to the Supreme Court. Hence this case.
Whether prescription of the offense charge for special law starts to run on the period where the crime was committed
No, In resolving the issue of prescription of the offense charged, the following shall be considered: (1) the period of prescription for the offense charged; (2) the time the period of prescription started to run; and (3) the time the prescriptive period was interrupted.
Looking closely at the provisions of R.A. No. 3019 (Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act), the law provides for its own prescriptive period of 15 years from the commission of the crime.
However, since R.A. No. 3019, as amended, is a special law, the applicable rule in the computation of the prescriptive period is provided in Act No. 3326, Section 215 as amended, which provides that Prescription shall begin to run from the day of the commission of the violation of the law, and if the same be not known at the time, from the discovery thereof and the institution of judicial proceedings for its investigation and punishment.
This implies that if the commission of the crime were known, the prescriptive period shall commence to run on the day the crime was committed. However, if the violation of the special law was not known at the time of its commission, the prescription begins to run only from the discovery thereof ;