COPIED FROM CERTAIN REFERENCES. The elements of estafa with abuse of confidence under this provision are as follows:
1. That money, goods, or other personal property be received by the offender in trust, or on commission, or for administration, or under any other obligation involving the duty to make delivery of, or to return, the same;
2. That there be misappropriation or conversion of such money or property by the offender; or denial on his part of such receipt;
3. That such misappropriation or conversion or denial is to the prejudice of another; and
4. That there is a demand made by the offended party to the offender.15
Article 315, paragraph 1(b) of the Revised Penal Code reads:
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To "misappropriate" a thing of value for one’s own use or benefit, not only the conversion to one’s personal advantage but also every attempt to dispose of the property of another without a right.13 Misappropriation or conversion may be proved by the prosecution by direct evidence or by circumstantial evidence.
Demand is not an element of the felony or a condition precedent to the filing of a criminal complaint for estafa. Indeed, the accused may be convicted of the felony under Article 315, paragraph 1(b) of the Revised Penal Code if the prosecution proved misappropriation or conversion by the accused of the money or property subject of the Information.14 In a prosecution for estafa, demand is not necessary where there is evidence of misappropriation or conversion.15 However, failure to account upon demand, for funds or property held in trust, is circumstantial evidence of misappropriation.16
Demand need not be formal. It may be verbal. In Barrameda v. Court of Appeals,17 the Court ruled that even a query as to the whereabouts of the money is tantamount to a demand:
It must be noted that the specific word "demand" need not be used to show that demand had, indeed, been made upon the person charged of the offense. A query as to the whereabouts of the money, such as the one proven in the case at bench, is tantamount to a demand.18
1. What is Estafa?
Estafa is a criminal offense wherein a person defrauds another by any of the following means: (1) by unfaithfulness or abuse of confidence; (2) by deceit; or (3) fraudulent means.
Estafa through unfaithfulness or abuse of confidence is done by (1) altering quality, quantity and substance of subject matter of contract; (2) misappropriating or converting goods/property of another; and (3) taking advantage of a signature in blank.
Estafa through deceit or fraudulent acts executed prior to or simultaneously with the commission of the fraud is done by: (1) using fictitious name as means of deceit; (2) altering quality, fineness or weight of anything pertaining to art or business; (3) by issuing unfunded checks or postdated checks; and (4) availing of services of hotel, inn, restaurants etc, without paying therefor.
Estafa through fraudulent means is done by: (1) inducing another, by means of deceit, to sign any document; (2) resorting to some fraudulent practice to ensure success in a gambling game; and (3) removing, concealing, or destroying, in whole or in part, any court record, office files, document and other papers. (Article 315, Revised Penal Code)
2. What are the two basic indispensable elements of Estafa?
The two basic elements common to all forms of Estafa are: (1) Fraud; and (2) Resulting damage or intent to cause damage capable of pecuniary estimation.
3. What if there was no fraud on the part of the other party, will the Estafa case prosper?
No, as fraud is an element of Estafa, its absence is fatal to the prosecution of the case. When the allegation of deceit has not been...