2013 (Political Law) Bar Exam Questions: Essay Question 9

[Answer/discuss the question below. Or see Political Law Instructions; Political Law Essay Questions: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 810, 11 and 12; Political Law Multiple Choice Questions: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19 and 20. See also 2013 Bar Exam: Information, Discussions, Tips, Questions and Results]


Conrad is widely known in the neighborhood as a drug addict. He is also suspected of being a member of the notorious “Akyat-Condo Gang” that has previously broken into and looted condominium units in the area.

Retired Army Colonel Sangre — who is known as an anti-terrorism fighter who disclaimed human and constitutional rights and has been nicknamed “terror of Mindanao” — is now the Head of Security of Capricorn Land Corporation, the owner and developer of Sagittarius Estates where a series of robberies has recently taken place.

On March 1, 2013, Conrad informed his mother, Vannie, that uniformed security guards had invited him for a talk in their office but he refused to come. Later that day, however, Conrad appeared to have relented; he was seen walking into the security office flanked by two security guards. Nobody saw him leave the office afterwards.

Conrad did not go home that night and was never seen again. The following week and after a week-long search, Vannie feared the worst because of Col. Sangre’s reputation. She thus reported Conrad’s disappearance to the police. When nothing concrete resulted from the police investigation, Vannie — a the advice of counsel — filed a petition for a writ of amparo to compel Col. Sangre and the Sagittarius Security Office to produce Conrad and to hold them liable and responsible for Conrad’s disappearance.

(A) Did Vannie’s counsel give the correct legal advice? (6%)

(B) If the petition would prosper, can Col. Sangre be held liable and/or responsible for Conrad’s disappearance? (6%)


  1. A. This is Brion case. There must at least be governmental participation in the disappearance in order for an amparo case to prosper.
    B. Yes. Command Responsibility. At most to determine who the authors are.

    1. A) Writ of Amparo is not the proper case. Government participation required.

      B) IF it will prosper, he still cannot be held responsible. A separate criminal case must be filed to hold him liable/responsible.

      Facts based more on a Del Castillo ponencia (Pardico case). The command responsibility argument was limited in several cases decided by the SC, the writ of amparo can only be used to identify the persons involved.

      Ang intindi ko sa Second Question is liability/responsibility = conviction.

  2. Acquiescence with the government/state ang proper word. Regardless kung may government participation.

    Amparo does not determine responsibility but only accountability.

    Yata. Di ako sure.

  3. Section 1. Petition. – The petition for a writ of amparo is a remedy available to any person whose right to life, liberty and security is violated or threatened with violation by an unlawful act or omission of a public official or employee, or of a private individual or entity.

    The writ shall cover extralegal killings and enforced disappearances or threats thereof…… clear na pwede sa private individual or entity

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