2017 (Remedial Law) Bar Exam Questions: Question 19

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-XIX-

Boy Maton, a neighborhood tough guy, was arrested by a police officer on suspicion that he was keeping prohibited drugs in his clutch bag. When Boy Maton was searched immediately after the arrest, the officer found and recovered 10 sachets of shabu neatly tucked in the inner linings of the clutch bag. At the time of his arrest, Boy Maton was watching a basketball game being played in the town plaza, and he was cheering for his favorite team. He was subsequently charged with illegal possession of dangerous drugs, and he entered a plea of not guilty when he was arraigned.

During the trial, Boy Maton moved for the dismissal of the information on the ground that the facts revealed that he had been illegally arrested. He further moved for the suppression of the evidence confiscated from him as being the consequence of the illegal arrest, hence, the fruit of the poisonous tree.

The trial court, in denying the motions of Boy Maton, explained that at the time the motions were filed Boy Maton had already waived the right to raise the issue of the legality of the arrest. The trial court observed that, pursuant to the Rules of Court, Boy Maton, as the accused, should have assailed the validity of the arrest before entering his plea to the information. Hence, the trial court opined that any adverse consequence of the alleged illegal arrest had also been equally waived.

Comment on the ruling of the trial court. (5%)

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