Father said they are showing everybody Congolese, like Tata Undo, that Belgium is still calling the shots. But the other army is just boys that live around here. You can tell the difference. One has got him a red Frenchie hat.
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Boy, I like that hat. The others have red hankies tied around their necks. Mbote fe-That means no good. That is how I come to climb up the alligator pear tree when I saw them. My sisters have to sit and have their school, and I have to color and learn my letters. Here are my pets: Leon and the mongoose. Also the parrot. I feed it sour limes from the dima tree to make it sneeze and wipe its bill off, one side and then the other side. Mbote ve! Dima, dimba, dimbama. I like to say all those words because they come out of your mouth and laugh.
Nobody ever even gave me the mongoose. It came to the yard and looked at me. Every day it got closer and closer. One day the mongoose came in the house and then every day after that. It likes me the best. That is a mouse in a book. Stuart Little killed the one by the kitchen house and that was a good business, so now Mama lets it come on in the house. Dimba means listen! You listen here, Buster Brown! The snake by the kitchen house was a cobra that spits in your eyes. You go blind, and then it can just rare back and bite you any old time it feels like it. We went and found the chameleon all on our own.
Leah mostly found that one on her bed. Most animals are whatever color God made them and have to stay that way, but Leon is whatever dern color he wants to be. If he gets out and runs away in the house, oh boy Jeez old man. Wenda mbote- good-bye, fare ye well, and amen! So we keep him outside in a box that the comic books came in. If you poke him with a stick he turns black with sparkles and makes a noise. When I broke my arm it was the day Mr. Axelroot was supposed to come. Father said that was good timing by the grace a God. But when Mr. I said I was hiding from the Jimmy Crow boys.
Not yet. That arm hurt bad. Mama made me a sling out of the same bolt of cloth she brought over to make the bed sheets and baptizing dresses for the African girls. Axelroot did come back next day at noontime and smelled like when the fruit goes bad on you. Mama said it could wait one more day if we wanted to get there in one piece. While we were waiting for Mr. Axelroot to sit in his airplane and get to feeling better, the Congolese ladies came on down to the airplane field with great big old bags of manioc on their heads and he gave them money.
The ladies cried and yelled when he gave them the money. They use that pink money. Some of the ladies yelled hard at Mr. Axelroot and went away without giving him their stuff. Then we got in the plane and flew to Stanleyville: Mr. Axelroot, Father, and my broken arm. I was the first one of my sisters ever to break any bone but a toe. But, no, then he decided after all he wanted to go walk on a city street in Stanleyville, so he went and Mama stayed. The back of the airplane was so full of bags I had to sit on them. Big scratchy brown bags with manioc and bananas and little cloth bags of something hard.
I looked inside some of them: rocks. Sparkly things and dirty rocks. No, sir, it was diamonds. Axelroot said if I told, why then God would make Mama get sick and die. After I went to sleep and woke up again in the airplane Mr. Axelroot told us what all we could see from up there looking down: Hippos in the river. Elephants running around in the jungle, a whole bunch of them. A lion down by the water, eating. Its head moved up and down like our kitty in Atlanta.
Maybe too little. I know they live up in a tree so they can drop on you and kill you, and I wanted to see some. You could be right by one and not know it. We landed nice as you please on the grass. It was bumpier up in the sky than down on the grass. The big huge house right there was the hospital and they had a lot of white people inside, and some other ones in white dresses. There were so many white people I forgot to count.
The doctor smiled. He and Father talked about man things. The doctor was surprised about the Jimmy Crow boys being in our village. They have heard, is what he asked Father. The doctor frowned then. He said to forgive him but he did not agree. He called my father Reverend. Some of us follow careers and some of us get called out. My work is to bring salvation into the darkness. I do believe that man was a sinner, the way he sassed back at Father.
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We watched him mix up the white plaster and lay out strips. Or, if they did, I hoped I could watch. I saw Father hit a man one time, who did not praise the Lord. Now you Americans have them for a slave wage in the mines and let them cut off their own hands. And you, my friend, are stuck with the job of trying to make amens. He was wrapping up my arm while he said all that about cutting off hands.
He kept on wrapping the cool white strips around and around till it was all finished up and my arm inside like a hot dog in a bun. I was glad nobody wanted to cut off my hands. I see no amens to make! The Belgians and American business brought civilization to the Congo! The doctor held my white broken arm like a big bone in his two hands, feeling how my fingers bent. I see. Or did you take the passenger railway? He stood up then and clapped the white stuff off his hands, and I could see he was all done with my arm, even if Father wanted to argue till he went blue in the face.
The doctor held the door open for us. Between you and me, Reverend, I do not think the people here are looking for your kind of salvation. I think they are looking for Patrice Lumumba, the new soul of Africa. He looked out into the hallway and then closed the door with us still inside. Last week he spoke for an hour on the nonviolent road to independence.
The crowd loved it so much they rioted and killed twelve people. The doctor turned his back on us then. He washed his hands in a bowl and wiped them on a towel like Mama after the dishes. Then he came back and looked hard at my arm for a minute, and then at Father. He told my father there were only eight Congolese men in all this land who have been to college. You might better look in prison-Mr. Lumumba landed himself there after the riots last week. By the time he is out I expect he will have a larger following than Jesus. Hoo, boy! Saying anything is better than Jesus is a bad sin.
Father looked up at the ceiling and out the window and tried not to hit anything until the doctor opened the door and time for us to go. The ceiling light was a clear glass bowl half full of something dark, like a coffee cup, only it was dead bugs. I know why. They like to come up to the light because it is so, so pretty like something they want, and then they get trapped in there.
I know how they would feel if you touched them. When we came home my sisters had to cut up my dinner every day and help me get dressed. It was the best thing that happened. I showed Leah where you could get into the alligator pear tree and she boosted me up. I could still climb just dandy with my other arm. We had to wait up there in the tree. Axelroot drinks red whiskey. He has it under the seat of his airplane. I rolled it out with my foot and then put it back.
They always come at the same time. Then the army boys will come a-marching down the road saying a song in French. But, boy oh boy, let me tell you, they all have shoes. They walk together hard in the road and then stop so fast the dust comes down on their shoes.
The Jimmy Crow boys are harder to see. They come just every now and then and have meetings in a place back behind our chicken house. They squat down to listen to the main one that talks, and their legs and arms are so skinny you can tell just what shape a bone is. And no shoes, either.
Just white scabby dust on the tops of their feet, and all of them with those dark black sores and scars. Every scar shows up good. Mama says their skin bears scars different from ours because their skin is a map of all the sorrows in their lives. We were waiting to spy on them back there behind the chicken house when they came. Leah told me Mama says Mrs.
They want to take over the whole country and throw out the whites. I told her all that! I was the youngest one but I knew it. I lay so still against the tree branch I was just the same everything as the tree. I was like a green mamba snake. Company for dinner! And an eligible bachelor at that, without three wives or even one as far as I know. Anatole, the schoolteacher, is twenty-four years of age, with all his fingers still on, both eyes and both feet, and that is the local idea of a top-throb dreamboat.
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He has scars all over his face. Not accident scars, but thin little lines, the type that some of them here get done to them on purpose, like a tattoo. I tried not to stare but you end up thinking, How did somebody get all the cuts to line up so perfect like that? What did they use, a pizza-pie cutter or what? They were fine as a hair and perfectly straight, approximately a blue million of them, running from the middle of his nose to the sides of his face, like the ridges on a black corduroy skirt sewn on the bias, with the seam running right down the middle.
It is not the kind of thing you see very much of here in our village, but Anatole is not from here. He is Congolese all right, but he has a different kind of eyes that slant a little bit like a Siamese, only more intellectual. We all had to make every effort not to stare. There he sat at our dinner table with his smooth haircut and a regular yellow button-down shirt and his intelligent brown eyes blinking very normal when he listened to you, but then, all those nerve-jangling scars.
It gave him a mysterious air, like a putative from the law. I kept stealing glances at him across a plate of antelope meat and stale Potato Buds, which I guess just goes to show you how unaccustomed to the male species I have become. Anatole speaks French and English both, and single-handedly runs the school all by himself. Six mornings a week, little noisy dirt-kicking crowds of boys from our village and the next one over come straggling in for their education.
But when those lucky few show up every morning, Anatole lines them up, littlest to biggest. If ever you happen to be out and about in our village at the crack of dawn, as I try not to be, you can watch them do it. Each boy stands with his hand on the shoulder of the taller boy ahead, creating a big long slope of arms. Leah drew a picture of them. Granted my sister is mentally disturbed. After the lineup Anatole marches them into the church and urges them, I guess, to wrestle with their numbers and their French congregations and what not.
But they only take it so far, you see. Imagine: no school allowed after age twelve. Underdown told us the Belgians have always had the policy of steering the Congolese boys away from higher education. Nobody has their eye on that all-important diploma, let me tell you. And yet here Anatole speaks French, English, Kikongo and whatever all he first started out with, plus knowing enough to be the one all-purpose schoolteacher. He must have been busy as a beaver during his fleeting school days. Anatole was born up around near Stanleyville, but at a tender age with his mother being dead got sent to work on the rubber plantations near Coquilhatville, where more opportunities both good and bad present themselves-that was his way of putting it when he told us his personal life autography at dinner.
Just picturing her in her satin gown and a Congolese diamond digger in the same universe gave me the weebie jeebies. Around here the people seem content to settle for whatever scars life whangs them with as a decoration. The Underdowns took him on as a project because his family all got killed in some horrible way they love to hint at but never exactly tell.
Back when they used to live here, they heard about Anatole from some other missionaries and saved him from the famous diamond mines and taught him to love Jesus and how to read and write. Then they installed him as the schoolteacher. At least it gave us something to look forward to besides these wonderful dead animals we get to eat.
And it provided Mother something to get all franticky about. She tried to make up for the food by using the white tablecloth and serving those pitiful black plantains in the bone-china platter with the forget-me-nots that she was so proud of-her one pretty thing in this big old mess we have to live in. And I will say she did her best to be the graceful hostess. Anyways Anatole gave her compliments right and left, which tells you right there he was either a polite young man or mentally cracked.
The small talk and compliments went on so long I was fixing to croak. Well, that stupefied us all for a special moment in time. But Father leaned forward, fixing to rise to the challenge. Whenever he sees an argument coming, man oh man, does he get jazzed up. Anatole sighed. Tata Ndu has asked me to explain this.
His concern is with the important gods and ancestors of this village, who have always been honored in certain sacred ways. Tata Ndu worries that the people who go to your church are neglecting their duties. Anatole sighed again. The people of your congregation are mostly what we call in Kikongo the lenzuka. People who have shamed themselves or had very bad luck or something like that. Tata Boanda, for example. He has had terrible luck with his wives. No one can help this family anymore. The Boandas were very careful to worship their personal gods at home, making the proper sacrifices of food and doing everything in order.
But still their gods have abandoned them for some reason. This is what they feel. Their luck could not get any more bad, you see? So they are interested to try making sacrifices to your Jesus. Father looked like he was choking on a bone. I thought: Is there a doctor in the house? But Anatole went right on merrily ahead, apparently unaware he was fixing to kill my father of a heart attack. But he worries you are trying to lure too many of the others into following corrupt ways. He fears a disaster will come if we anger the gods.
Actually he said you are leading our villagers down into a hole, where they may fail to see the proper sun and become trapped like bugs on a rotten carcass. Well, that did it! Father was going to keel plumb over. Call the ambulance. Anatole paused. You could see him trying out different words in his head. My Father did not exactly say yes or no to that, though of course it was true. Father specializes in the upper hand. People also put their trust in him. Father loosened his tie and the collar of his short-sleeved Sunday shirt. Anatole calmly blinked at that. I reckon he was wondering which one Father had him pegged for, brute ox or stalwart heathen.
His business concerns the governing of human relations, not matters of the spirit. But you are quite right, there is another preacher aside from myself guiding my own right hand. What with him being the Father Knows Best of all times. We all stared at the middle of the table like something dead with feet had just turned up there.
Why, we knew Tata Kuvudundu. Some days he sells aspirins in the market, all dignified like Dr. Father told us Tata Kuvudundu conducts the sin of false prophecy. Supposedly he and his grown-up sons tell fortunes by throwing chicken bones into a calabash bowl. He is a respected nganga, a priest of the traditions, you might say. He is quite a good advisor to Tata Ndu. His red eyebrows flared above his scowling eyes, with the bad one starting to squint a little from the strain of it all.
A nut of the type that never falls far from the tree-Where I come from, sir, that is what we call a witch doctor! Dots of perspiration were running into the little ridges along his nose. My sisters were still staring at him with all their might, and no wonder. Six months is a long time for a family to tolerate itself without any outside distractions. Anatole seemed to be getting ants in his pants but was still bound and determined to argue with Father.
Men go especially to him when their wives are not getting children, or if they are adulterous. Mother suddenly snapped out of it. You all clear the table and start washing up. To my surprise, my sisters practically ran from the table. He was as frustrated as it gets and looked like he was fixing to throw a rod. I helped clear the dishes but then I sat back down. If anybody presumed I was too young for a conversation about adulters and not getting babies they had another think coming.
Besides, this was the most exciting occasion that had happened to us since Ruth May fell out of a tree, which goes to show you how fascinating our life was. Anatole told Father he ought not to think of Tata Kuvudundu as competition. He said barrenness and adultery were serious matters that probably ought to remain separate from Tata Jesus. Well, that did it. Remembered the missionary times? This was a nerve shock even to me, to hear that the villagers thought Christianity was like some old picture show that was way out of date. What did that make Father then, Charlie Chaplin, waddling around duck-footed, waving his cane and talking without any sounds coming out?
Mother and I watched him, expecting the dreaded atomic blowup. Then he got very still. He said he would work on a sermon that would clear up all the misunderstandings. Then he announced that this conversation had come to an end, and Anatole could consider himself excused from the table and this house. She brushed her hair out of her face and smiled at him as she reached across for the china platter.
He raised it up over her head and slammed it down hard on the table, cracking it right in two. The smaller half flipped upside down as it broke, and lay there dribbling black plantain juice like blood onto the tablecloth. Mother stood helplessly, holding her hands out to the plate like she wished she could mend its hurt feelings.
I am ashamed of you. He studied her. Father is not one to let you get away with simply apologizing.
Her light blue eyes had gone blank, like shallow pans of water. You could honestly not tell what she was thinking. Finally he turned away from, her and me both with his usual disgust. He went and sat at his desk, leaving us all in a silence even greater than before. I and Path. Long one is Congo. Congo is one long path and I learn to walk. That is the name of my story, forward and backward.
Manene is the word for path: Manene enenam, amen. One day she nearly does not come back. Pure and unblemished souls must taste very bland, with an aftertaste of bitterness. Tata Ndu reported the news of my demise. Tata Ndu is chief of Kilanga and everything past it in several directions.
Behind his glasses and striking outfit he possesses an imposing bald forehead and the huge, triangular upper body of a comic-book bully. How would he even know about a person like me, the white little crooked girl as I was called? Yet he did. The day he visited my family I had been walking alone, making my way home on the forest path from the river. It was a surprising event for him to come to our house. He had never gone out of his way to see my father, only to avoid him, though he sometimes sent us messages through Anatole, his own sons, or other minor ambassadors.
This day was different. He came because he had learned I was eaten by a lion. Early that afternoon, Leah and I had been sent to bring back water. Sent together, the twin and the niwt, chained together always in life as in prelife. There was little choice, as Her Highness Rachel is above manual labor, and Ruth May beneath it so to speak, so Leah and I were considered by our mother, by default, disposed for her errands. It is always the twin and the niwt she sends out to the marche on market day, to walk among all those frightening women and bring back fruit or a kettle or whatever thing she needs.
She even sends us sometimes to bring back meat from the butcher marche, a place where Rachel will not set foot on account of the intestines and neatly stacked heads. We can look out our door and know when the butcher marche is open for business, if the big kapok tree down there is filled with black buzzards. This is the truth. We call them the Congolese billboard. But above all else and every day, she would send us to get water.
It was hard for me to carry the heavy pail with my one good hand, and I went too slowly. Slow lee two went I. My habit on that path was reciting sentences forward and back, for the concentration improved my walking. It helped me forget the tedium of moving only one way through the world, the way of the slow, slow body. So Leah took all the water and went ahead. As all ways. The forest path was a live thing underfoot that went a little farther every day.
For me, anyway, it did. First, it went only from one side of our yard to the other: what our mother could see and deem safe if she stood in the middle. At first we only heard stories about what happened to it on the north, after the forest closed down on it: a stream, a waterfall, clear pools for swimming. It went to a log bridge. It went to another village. It went to Leopoldville. It went to Cairo. Some of these stories were bound to be true, and some were not; to discover the line between, I decided to walk.
I became determined to know a few steps more of that path every day. If we stayed long enough I would walk to Johannesburg and Egypt. What I do not have is kakakaka, the Kikongo word for hurrying up. But I find I can go a long way without kakakaka. Already I had gone as far as the pools and the log bridge on the north. And south, to clearings where women wearing babies in slings stoop together with digging sticks and sing songs not hymns and grow their manioc. Everyone knows those places. But without kakakaka I discover sights of my own: how the women working their field will stand up one after another, unwrap the pagne of bright cloth tied under their breasts, stretch it out wide before retying it.
They resemble flocks of butterflies opening and closing their wings. I have seen the little forest elephants that move in quiet bands, nudging the trees with their small, pinkish tusks. I have seen bands of Pygmies, too. When they smile they reveal teeth filed to sharp points, yet they are gentle, and unbelievably small. You can only believe they are men and women by their beards and breasts, and the grown-up way they move to protect their children. They always see you first, and grow still as tree trunks.
I discovered the bidila dipapfumu, the cemetery of witch doctors. I discovered a bird with a black head and mahogany-colored tail as long as my arm, curved like a bow. In the Field Guide to African Birds left by our fowl-minded patron Brother Fowles, my bird is called the paradise flycatcher. In the notebook I keep in my pillowcase, in which I draw pictures of all things I know, I put a smile on the face of the paradise flycatcher and printed underneath, in my backward code for secrecy:. I also made a habit of following Methuselah as he made his way around our house in insecure spirals.
He roosts right inside our latrine, which is near where his empty cage was thrown by the Reverend into the weeds. Its hulk rots there like a shipwreck. Methuselah, like me, is a cripple: the Wreck of Wild Africa. For all time since the arrival of Christ, he had lived on seventeen inches of a yardstick.
Now he has a world. What can he possibly do with it? He has no muscle tone in his wings. They are atrophied, probably beyond hope of recovery. Where his pectoral muscles should be, he has a breast weighed down with the words of human beings: by words interred, free-as-a-bird absurd, unheard! Sometimes he flaps his wings as if he nearly remembers flight, as he did in the first jubilant terror of his release.
But his independence was frozen in that moment. Now, after stretching his wings he retracts them again, stretches out his head, and waddles, making his tedious way up one branch and down another. By arresto mayor in its maximum period to prision correccional in its minimum period, when the damage caused is over 50 pesos but does not exceed pesos;.
By prision correccional in its minimum and medium periods, if the damage caused is over pesos but does not exceed 1, pesos; and. By prision correccional in its medium and maximum periods, if it is over 1, pesos. Crimes involving destruction. Burning one's own property as means to commit arson.
Setting fire to property exclusively owned by the offender. In cases where death resulted as a consequence of arson. Prima facie evidence of arson. That substantial amount of inflammable substance or materials were stored within the building not necessary in the course of the defendant's business; and.
That the fire started simultaneously in more than one part of the building or locale under circumstances that cannot normally be due to accidental or unintentional causes: Provided, however, That at least one of the following is present in any of the three above-mentioned circumstances:.
Special cases of malicious mischief. By arresto mayor, if such value does not exceed the abovementioned amount but it is over pesos; and. By arresto menor, in such value does not exceed pesos. By arresto mayor in its minimum and medium periods, if such value is over pesos but does not exceed 1, pesos; and. By arresto menor or fine of not less than the value of the damage caused and not more than pesos, if the amount involved does not exceed pesos or cannot be estimated. If the damage shall result in any derailment of cars, collision or other accident, the penalty of prision mayor shall be imposed, without prejudice to the criminal liability of the offender for the other consequences of his criminal act.
For the purpose of the provisions of the article, the electric wires, traction cables, signal system and other things pertaining to railways, shall be deemed to constitute an integral part of a railway system. Destroying or damaging statues, public monuments or paintings.
Any person who shall destroy or damage any useful or ornamental painting of a public nature shall suffer the penalty of arresto menor or a fine not exceeding pesos, or both such fine and imprisonment, in the discretion of the court. The widowed spouse with respect to the property which belonged to the deceased spouse before the same shall have passed into the possession of another; and.
Brothers and sisters and brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law, if living together. Adultery shall be punished by prision correccional in its medium and maximum periods. If the person guilty of adultery committed this offense while being abandoned without justification by the offended spouse, the penalty next lower in degree than that provided in the next preceding paragraph shall be imposed. The concubine shall suffer the penalty of destierro. When the woman is deprived of reason or otherwise unconscious; and. When the woman is under twelve years of age, even though neither of the circumstances mentioned in the two next preceding paragraphs shall be present.
Whenever the crime of rape is committed with the use of a deadly weapon or by two or more persons, the penalty shall be reclusion perpetua to death. When by reason or on the occasion of the rape, the victim has become insane, the penalty shall be death. When rape is attempted or frustrated and a homicide is committed by reason or on the occasion thereof, the penalty shall be likewise death.
When by reason or on the occasion of the rape, a homicide is committed, the penalty shall be death. Acts of lasciviousness. The penalty next higher in degree shall be imposed upon any person who shall seduce his sister or descendant, whether or not she be a virgin or over eighteen years of age. Under the provisions of this Chapter, seduction is committed when the offender has carnal knowledge of any of the persons and under the circumstances described herein.
Simple seduction. Acts of lasciviousness with the consent of the offended party. Corruption of minors. White slave trade. The same penalty shall be imposed in every case, if the female abducted be under twelve years of age. Consented abduction. The offended party cannot institute criminal prosecution without including both the guilty parties, if they are both alive, nor, in any case, if he shall have consented or pardoned the offenders.
The offenses of seduction, abduction, rape or acts of lasciviousness, shall not be prosecuted except upon a complaint filed by the offended party or her parents, grandparents, or guardian, nor, in any case, if the offender has been expressly pardoned by the above named persons, as the case may be. In cases of seduction, abduction, acts of lasciviousness and rape, the marriage of the offender with the offended party shall extinguish the criminal action or remit the penalty already imposed upon him. The provisions of this paragraph shall also be applicable to the co-principals, accomplices and accessories after the fact of the above-mentioned crimes.
Civil liability of persons guilty of crimes against chastity. To acknowledge the offspring, unless the law should prevent him from so doing. In every case to support the offspring. Liability of ascendants, guardians, teachers, or other persons entrusted with the custody of the offended party.
Teachers or other persons in any other capacity entrusted with the education and guidance of youth, shall also suffer the penalty of temporary special disqualification in its maximum period to perpetual special disqualification. Any person falling within the terms of this article, and any other person guilty of corruption of minors for the benefit of another, shall be punished by special disqualification from filling the office of guardian.
Simulation of births, substitution of one child for another and concealment or abandonment of a legitimate child. The same penalties shall be imposed upon any person who shall conceal or abandon any legitimate child with intent to cause such child to lose its civil status. Any physician or surgeon or public officer who, in violation of the duties of his profession or office, shall cooperate in the execution of any of the crimes mentioned in the two next preceding paragraphs, shall suffer the penalties therein prescribed and also the penalty of temporary special disqualification.
Usurpation of civil status. Marriage contracted against provisions of laws. If either of the contracting parties shall obtain the consent of the other by means of violence, intimidation or fraud, he shall be punished by the maximum period of the penalty provided in the next preceding paragraph. Premature marriages. The same penalties shall be imposed upon any woman whose marriage shall have been annulled or dissolved, if she shall marry before her delivery or before the expiration of the period of three hundred and one day after the legal separation.
Performance of illegal marriage ceremony. Requirement for publicity. A fair and true report, made in good faith, without any comments or remarks, of any judicial, legislative or other official proceedings which are not of confidential nature, or of any statement, report or speech delivered in said proceedings, or of any other act performed by public officers in the exercise of their functions.
Threatening to publish and offer to present such publication for a compensation. Prohibited publication of acts referred to in the course of official proceedings. Slander by deed. If said act is not of a serious nature, the penalty shall be arresto menor or a fine not exceeding pesos. The author or editor of a book or pamphlet, or the editor or business manager of a daily newspaper, magazine or serial publication, shall be responsible for the defamations contained therein to the same extent as if he were the author thereof.
Preliminary investigation of criminal action for written defamations as provided for in the chapter shall be conducted by the provincial or city fiscal of the province or city, or by the municipal court of the city or capital of the province where such action may be instituted in accordance with the provisions of this article. No criminal action for defamation which consists in the imputation of a crime which cannot be prosecuted de oficio shall be brought except at the instance of and upon complaint expressly filed by the offended party.
Proof of the truth. Proof of the truth of an imputation of an act or omission not constituting a crime shall not be admitted, unless the imputation shall have been made against Government employees with respect to facts related to the discharge of their official duties. In such cases if the defendant proves the truth of the imputation made by him, he shall be acquitted. Libelous remarks. Intriguing against honor. Any person who, by simple imprudence or negligence, shall commit an act which would otherwise constitute a grave felony, shall suffer the penalty of arresto mayor in its medium and maximum periods; if it would have constituted a less serious felony, the penalty of arresto mayor in its minimum period shall be imposed.
When the execution of the act covered by this article shall have only resulted in damage to the property of another, the offender shall be punished by a fine ranging from an amount equal to the value of said damages to three times such value, but which shall in no case be less than twenty-five pesos. A fine not exceeding two hundred pesos and censure shall be imposed upon any person who, by simple imprudence or negligence, shall cause some wrong which, if done maliciously, would have constituted a light felony. In the imposition of these penalties, the court shall exercise their sound discretion, without regard to the rules prescribed in Article sixty-four.
The provisions contained in this article shall not be applicable:. When, by imprudence or negligence and with violation of the Automobile Law, to death of a person shall be caused, in which case the defendant shall be punished by prision correccional in its medium and maximum periods. Simple imprudence consists in the lack of precaution displayed in those cases in which the damage impending to be caused is not immediate nor the danger clearly manifest.
The penalty next higher in degree to those provided for in this article shall be imposed upon the offender who fails to lend on the spot to the injured parties such help as may be in this hand to give. Repealing Clause. The provisions of the Acts which are mentioned hereunder are also repealed, namely:. Act , Sections 9, 10, 11, and Act , Sections 1, 2, and 6. Act , Sections 3 and 4. Act , Sections 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, first clause , 11, and Act , Sections 2, 3, 4, 6, 8, and 9.
Act , Sections , , , and Act , Sections 1, 2, 3, and 5; and General Order, No. Act No. Law defining and penalizing the crimes of treason, insurrection, sedition, etc. Law governing cockfighting and cockpits, now governed by Art. Law defining and penalizing highway robbery or brigandage, now covered by Arts. Law on vagrancy now penalized by Art. Law on trade-marks and trade-names now provided for in Arts. The Chattel Mortgage Law, now penalized in Art.
Law prohibiting importation, sale etc. Law governing discretion of Governor-General in granting conditional pardons, now covered by Art. Law providing for diminution of sentences by reason of good conduct and diligence, now governed by Art. Act for the punishment of perjury in official investigations, now provided for in Arts.
Law on counterfeiting and forgery, now defined and penalized in Arts. Act penalizing crimes against legislative bodies, now provided for in Arts. Act prohibiting gambling, now provided for in Arts. Law on the crime of adulterio, estupro, rapto, violacion, calumnia, injuria, etc. Act Nos. Act governing slavery, involuntary servitude, peonage, and the sale or purchase of human beings, now penalized in Arts. Act providing for the confiscation and disposition of money, articles, instruments, appliances and devices in gambling, now provided for in Art.
Act penalizing willful destruction, injury, or taking or carrying away any property of the Philippine Library, now provided for in Art. Act penalizing infidelity in the custody of prisoners detained for or a convicted of a crime, now governed by Arts. Act restricting the use of opium, etc. Act prohibiting the forcing, compelling, or obliging of any laborer or other employee to purchase merchandise, commodities, or personal property under certain conditions, and the payment of wages of a laborer or employee by means of tokens or objects other than legal tender currency, now penalized by Art.
Act providing for the allowance to persons convicted of preventive imprisonment, etc. Law fixing prescription of the crime of libel and of a civil action arising therefrom, now provided in Art. Act amending the Revised Administrative Code. Law governing manner in which the death penalty shall be executed, now embodied in Arts. Law governing habitual delinquency, now provided in Art. General Orders No. Code of Criminal Procedure.
WHEREAS, there is an urgent need to update these gambling laws for simplicity and clearer understanding and to standardize and provide stiffer penalties for their violations to make them more effective and responsive to the present norms of conduct and behavior of the people. MARCOS, President of the Philippines, by virtue of the powers vested in me by the Constitution and in order to effect the desired and necessary changes and reforms in the social and economic structure of our society, do hereby order and declare to be part of the laws of the land, the following: chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary.
Violations and Penalties. If the place where gambling is carried on has a reputation of a gambling place or that prohibited gambling is frequently carried on therein or the place is a public or government building or barangay hall, the culprit shall be punished by the penalty provided for in its maximum period and a fine of Six Thousand Pesos.
The penalty of prision correccional in its maximum degree and a fine of Six Thousand Pesos shall be imposed upon the maintainer, conductor of the above gambling schemes. The penalty of prision mayor in its medium degree and temporary absolute disqualification and a fine of Six Thousand Pesos shall be imposed if the maintainer, conductor or banker is a government official, or if a player, promoter, referee, umpire, judge or coach in cases of game-fixing, point-shaving and other game machination. The penalty of prision correccional in its medium degree and a fine ranging from Five Hundred pesos to Two Thousand Pesos shall be imposed upon any person who shall knowingly and without lawful purpose in any hour of any day shall have in his possession any lottery list, paper, or other matter containing letter, figures, signs or symbols which pertain to or in any manner used in the game of jueteng, jai-alai or horse racing bookies and similar game or lottery which has taken place or about to take place.
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WHEREAS, findings of the police and intelligence agencies of the government reveal that fires and other crimes involving destruction in Metro Manila and other urban centers in the country are being perpetuated by criminal syndicates, some of which have foreign connections;. WHEREAS, the current law on arson suffer from certain inadequacies that impede the successful enforcement and prosecution of arsonists;. WHEREAS, it is imperative that the high incidence of fires and other crimes involving destruction be prevented to protect the national economy and preserve the social economic and political stability of the country;.
MARCOS, President of the Philippines, by virtue of the powers vested in me by the Constitution do hereby order and decree as part of the law of the land, the following: chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary. The same penalty shall be imposed when a person sets fire to his own property under circumstances which expose to danger the life or property of another. Destructive Arson. Any ammunition factory and other establishment where explosives, inflammable or combustible materials are stored.
Any archive, museum, whether public or private or any edifice devoted to culture, education or social services. Any church or place or worship or other building where people usually assemble. Any train, airplane or any aircraft, vessel or watercraft, or conveyance for transportation of persons or property. Any building where evidence is kept for use in any legislative, judicial, administrative or other official proceedings. Any hospital, hotel, dormitory, lodging house, housing tenement, shopping center, public or private market, theater or movie house or any similar place or building.
Any building, whether used as dwelling or not, situated in a populated or congested area. Other Cases of Arson. Any building used as offices of the government or any of its agencies;. Any uninhabited house or dwelling;. Any industrial establishment, shipyard, oil well or mine shaft, platform or tunnel;. Any plantation, farm, pastureland, growing crop, grain filed, orchard, bamboo grove or forest;.
Any rice mill, cane mill or mill central; and. Any railway or bus station, airport, wharf or warehouse. Special Aggravating Circumstances in Arson. If committed with intent to gain;. If committed for the benefit of another;. If the offender is motivated by spite or hatred towards the owner or occupant of the property burned;. If committed by a syndicate. The offense is committed by a syndicate if it is planned or carried out by a group of three 3 or more persons.
Where Death Results From Arson. Prima Facie Evidence of Arson. If the fire started simultaneously in more than one part of the building or establishment. If substantial amount of flammable substances or materials are stored within the building not necessary in the business of the offender nor for household use. Gasoline, kerosene, petroleum or other flammable or combustible substances or materials soaked therewith or containers, thereof, or any mechanical, electrical, chemical, or electronic contrivance designed to start a fire, or ashes or traces of any of the foregoing are found in the ruins or premises of the burned building or property.
If the building or property is insured for substantially more than its actual value at the time of the issuance of the policy. If shortly before the fire a substantial portion of the effects insured and stored in building or property had been withdrawn from the premises except in the ordinary course of business. If a demand for money or other valuable consideration was made before the fire in exchange for the desistance of the offender or for the safety of other person or property of the victim. Conspiracy to Commit Arson.
Confiscation of Object of Arson. Done in the City of Manila this 7th day of March nineteen hundred and seventy nine. WHEREAS, there have been rampant and wanton burnings of residential houses, public buildings, markets, hotels and other commercial establishments;. WHEREAS, to effectively discourage and deter the commission of arson, and to prevent destruction of properties and protect the lives of innocent people, it is necessary that the capital punishment be imposed upon arsonists;. Article of the Revised Penal Code shall read as follows: chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary.
One 1 or more buildings or edifices, consequent to one single act of burning or as a result of simultaneous burnings, or committed on several or different occasions;. Any building of public or private ownership, devoted to the public in general or where people usually gather or congregate for a definite purpose such as but not limited to official governmental function or business, private transaction, commerce, trade workshop, meetings and conferences, or merely incidental to a definite purpose such as but not limited to hotels, motels, transient dwellings, public conveyance or stops or terminals, regardless of whether the offender had knowledge that there are persons in said building or edifice at the time it is set on fire and regardless also of whether the building is actually inhabited or not.
Any train or locomotive, ship or vessel, airship or airplane, devoted to transportation or conveyance, or for public use, entertainment or leisure. Any building, factory, warehouse installation and any appurtenances thereto, which are devoted to the service of public utilities. Any building the burning of which is for the purpose of concealing or destroying evidence of another violation of law, or for the purpose of concealing bankruptcy or defrauding creditors or to collect from insurance.
Irrespective of the application of the above enumerated qualifying circumstances, the penalty of death shall likewise be imposed when the arson is perpetrated or committed by two 2 or more persons or by a group of persons, regardless of whether their purpose is merely to burn or destroy the building or the burning merely constitutes an overt act in the commission or another violation of law.
The penalty of reclusion temporal in its maximum period to death shall also be imposed upon any person who shall burn: chanroblesvirtuallawlibrary. Any arsenal, shipyard, storehouse or military powder or fireworks factory, ordinance, storehouse, archives or general museum of the government. If as a consequence of his commission of any of the acts penalized under this Article, death or injury results, or any valuable documents, equipment, machineries, apparatus, or other valuable properties were burned or destroyed, the mandatory penalty of death shall be imposed.
Provisions of Articles , and of the Revised Penal Code which are or may be inconsistent herewith are hereby repealed. Done in the City of Manila, this 11th day of November, in the year of Our Lord, nineteen hundred and eighty. If any section or sections of this Act shall be declared unconstitutional or invalid it shall not invalidate the other sections hereof. Law Library. On-Line Bar Review. Intellectual Property. Chan Robles Virtual Law Library. The penalty next higher in degree shall be imposed if the offender be a public officer or employee.
Section Two. Inciting to war or giving motives for reprisals. Flight to enemy country.
Section Three. Piracy in general and mutiny on the high seas. Arbitrary detention. The commission of a crime, or violent insanity or any other ailment requiring the compulsory confinement of the patient in a hospital, shall be considered legal grounds for the detention of any person. Violation of domicile. Prohibition, interruption and dissolution of peaceful meetings.
Section Four. Interruption of religious worship. Rebellion or insurrection; How committed. Penalty for sedition. Act tending to prevent the meeting of the Assembly and similar bodies. Violation of parliamentary immunity. Illegal assemblies. Persons merely present at such meeting shall suffer the penalty of arresto mayor, unless they are armed, in which case the penalty shall be prision correccional.
Direct assaults. If none of these circumstances be present, the penalty of prision correccional in its minimum period and a fine not exceeding P pesos shall be imposed. Tumults and other disturbance of public orders; Tumultuous disturbance or interruption liable to cause disturbance. Alarms and scandals. Delivery of prisoners from jails. If other means are used, the penalty of arresto mayor shall be imposed. Evasion of service of sentence. However, if such evasion or escape shall have taken place by means of unlawful entry, by breaking doors, windows, gates, walls, roofs, or floors, or by using picklocks, false keys, deceit, violence or intimidation, or through connivance with other convicts or employees of the penal institution, the penalty shall be prision correccional in its maximum period.
Commission of another crime during service of penalty imposed for another offense; Penalty. Making and importing and uttering false coins. Mutilation of coins; Importation and utterance of mutilated coins. Forging treasury or bank notes on other documents payable to bearer; importing, and uttering such false or forged notes and documents. Counterfeiting, importing and uttering instruments not payable to bearer. Falsification of legislative documents. The same penalty shall be imposed upon any ecclesiastical minister who shall commit any of the offenses enumerated in the preceding paragraphs of this article, with respect to any record or document of such character that its falsification may affect the civil status of persons.
Any person who shall knowingly introduce in evidence in any judicial proceeding or to the damage of another or who, with the intent to cause such damage, shall use any of the false documents embraced in the next preceding article, or in any of the foregoing subdivisions of this article, shall be punished by the penalty next lower in degree. Section Five. False medical certificates, false certificates of merits or service, etc.
The penalty of arresto mayor shall be imposed upon any private person who shall falsify a certificate falling within the classes mentioned in the two preceding subdivisions. Section Six. Manufacturing and possession of instruments or implements for falsification. Usurpation of authority or official functions. False testimony against a defendant. In cases provided in subdivisions 3 and 4 of this article the offender shall further suffer a fine not to exceed 1, pesos. Machinations in public auctions. If the offense mentioned in this article affects any food substance, motor fuel or lubricants, or other articles of prime necessity, the penalty shall be that of prision mayor in its maximum and medium periods it being sufficient for the imposition thereof that the initial steps have been taken toward carrying out the purposes of the combination.
Importation and disposition of falsely marked articles or merchandise made of gold, silver, or other precious metals or their alloys. A trade-name or trade-mark as herein used is a word or words, name, title, symbol, emblem, sign or device, or any combination thereof used as an advertisement, sign, label, poster, or otherwise, for the purpose of enabling the public to distinguish the business of the person who owns and uses said trade-name or trade-mark.
Possession, preparation and use of prohibited drugs and maintenance of opium dens. Keeper, watchman and visitor of opium den. Importation and sale of prohibited drugs. What acts are punishable in gambling. Grave scandal. Vagrants and prostitutes; penalty. For the purposes of this article, women who, for money or profit, habitually indulge in sexual intercourse or lascivious conduct, are deemed to be prostitutes.
Who are public officers. Knowingly rendering unjust judgment. Direct bribery. Frauds against the public treasury and similar offenses. When the culprit is an officer or employee of the Bureau of Internal Revenue or the Bureau of Customs, the provisions of the Administrative Code shall be applied. Malversation of public funds or property; Presumption of malversation.
In all cases, persons guilty of malversation shall also suffer the penalty of perpetual special disqualification and a fine equal to the amount of the funds malversed or equal to the total value of the property embezzled. Conniving with or consenting to evasion. Evasion through negligence. Removal, concealment or destruction of documents. In either case, the additional penalty of temporary special disqualification in its maximum period to perpetual disqualification shall be imposed. Revelation of secrets by an officer. Open disobedience. Anticipation of duties of a public office.
Usurpation of legislative powers. Abuses against chastity; Penalties. If the person solicited be the wife, daughter, sister of relative within the same degree by affinity of any person in the custody of such warden or officer, the penalties shall be prision correccional in its minimum and medium periods and temporary special disqualification. Unintentional abortion. Responsibility of participants in a duel.
If the offense shall have been committed against any of the persons enumerated in Article , or with attendance of any of the circumstances mentioned in Article , the case covered by subdivision number 1 of this Article shall be punished by reclusion temporal in its medium and maximum periods; the case covered by subdivision number 2 by prision correccional in its maximum period to prision mayor in its minimum period; the case covered by subdivision number 3 by prision correccional in its medium and maximum periods; and the case covered by subdivision number 4 by prision correccional in its minimum and medium periods.
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