Friday, January 13, 2006

My Moot Court Case - Malversation

The facts of the case are these:

There is this accountable officer who is in charge of selling meat to a marginalized sector of society. She sells meat to them at P50 per kilo only whereas the prevailing market price of the meat was about P100 per kilo. However, one day, she was not able to sell all her meat at the place designated by her office because of bad weather condition. So, she decided to sell them to other persons instead at the same price of P50 per kilo. Further, she sold them at credit whereas her instructions were to sold them for cash and deposit the proceeds to a bank. So, when an audit was conducted, the auditor found that she was short of P15,000. In her defense, she showed promissory notes evidencing that she sold them on credit.

As prosecutors in this moot case, we filed a malversation case against the accountable officer. As of today, we have already rested the prosecution’s case by offering the testimonies of our witnesses and other documentary exhibits. It is now up to the defense to present their side.

ART. 217. Malversation of public funds or property. - Presumption of malversation .— Any public officer who, by reason of the duties of his office, is accountable for public funds or property, shall appropriate the same, or shall take or misappropriate or shall consent, or through abandonment or negligence, shall permit any other person to take such public funds or property, wholly or partially, or shall otherwise be guilty of the misappropriation or malversation of such funds or property, xxx.
x x x x x x x x x
The failure of the public officer to have duly forthcoming such public funds or property, upon demand by a duly authorized officer, shall be prima facie evidence that he has put such missing funds or property to personal use.
The elements of malversation, essential for the conviction of an accused under the above penal provision are:
1. That the offender is a public officer;
2. That he has the custody or control of funds or property by reason of the duties of his office;
3. That the funds or property are public funds or property for which he is accountable; and
4. That he appropriated, took, misappropriated or consented or through abandonment or negligence, permitted another person to take them.

Word of the Day

Negligence – failure to exercise that degree of care which a person of ordinary prudence would exercise under the same circumstances.

Question of the Day

Can a private person be guilty of malversation?


  1. Lawstude,

    Refresh my memory on this, if i remember it tight he can also be liable if he is either a principal, accessory or accomplice of the public officer.

  2. Is there a statue of limitation regarding malversation case? The case was tried in absentia 30 years ago. If not, can the accused pay back P200,000 that was malversed 30 years ago? What is the procedure in regards to this matter?