Another very interesting article written by Mr. Macasaet of Malaya will be found below.
An important question that may be asked is why was the controversial scammer David Bunevacz seated right beside the controversial land-grabbing scammer Teresita Barque Hernandez during the Manotok vs Barque en banc?
David Bunevacz already left the Philippines because of a warrant of arrest among other things waiting for him in the Philippines.
What will Teresita Barque Hernandez do now that it is very clear and obvious that she is a land-grabbing scammer? Would she also leave the country to save her face? Would she join the likes of David Bunevacz?
Teresita Barque Hernandez was, to put it mildly, … caught in the act of cheating, lying, stealing, scamming, and falsifying.
Manotok proof of ownership
The heirs of Severino Manotok have sufficiently proved to the courts that the 34-hectare property in Quezon City has been theirs for a long time. In fact, they started occupying the land and paying taxes on it since 1920.
Their best proof, however, is a reconstituted title issued by the register of deeds of Quezon City.
According to the en banc arguments of former SC justice Florentino P. Feliciano, “the Manotok claim of titles began with the purchase of Zacaria Modesto, Regina Geronimo and Feliciano Villanueva of lot 823 from the Philippine government on March 10, 1919. Ownership of the land was later consolidated in Modesto who, in 1920, assigned his interests to M. Teodoro and Severino Manotok. This is proven by records in the Land Management Bureau which show that assignment of certificates were consummated or signed on and identified No. 1054 dated March 11, 1919 and June 7, 1920.
In 1923, M. Teodoro assigned his shares and interests over Lot 823 to Severino Manotok, making him the single owner of Lot 823.
The 34-hectare land of the Manotoks, lost to the heirs of Homer Barque in the pen of Supreme Court Associate Justice Santiago, “is surrounded by the Ayala Heights, Golf Hill Terraces and Capitol Hills Subdivision.”
It has always been known as the Manotok compound.
In fact, Justice Feliciano argues that “over the years, the Manotoks have built perimeter walls to secure the property and have constructed houses on it, where they live up to the present.
“The Manotoks have likewise religiously paid real estate taxes on the property from 1933 until the present,” according to the narration of Justice Feliciano.
During all this time, no word was ever heard from the heirs of Homer Barque, now represented by Teresita Barque Hernandez.
One is tempted to ask: Did Teresita Barque Hernandez know from the start that Homer Barque left them a fortune worth its area in gold? Obviously they did not. None of the heirs could show proof that any of them paid taxes on the property which had been occupied for almost a century by the Manotoks.
The Barque claim
It was as late as 1997 that the Manotoks learned that heirs of a certain Homer Barque had applied with the Land Registration Administration for administrative reconstitution of title over the property.
The earlier decision of Justice Consuelo Ynares Santiago failed to notice that Homer L. Barque Sr. had never been in possession of the property or any portion of it from the Manotoks.
On the contrary, the heirs of Barque were notified that the property covered by their claim appears to duplicate that of the Manotoks.
But the Barque family claimed that they acquired the land – the same Lot 823 … from one Emiliano Setosta in 1975.
It was alleged that after the sale by Setosta to Barque, the former’s alleged title was cancelled and became TCT No. 210177 issued to Barque.
Again forgotten by omission or design by Justice Santiago in her 16-page ponencia awarding the land to the heirs of Homer Barque is that as early as Aug. 1988 or less than three months after a fire gutted the office of the Register of Deeds of Quezon City, the Manotoks applied for administrative reconstitution.
That was less than three months after the fire allegedly left the original title of the Barques in ashes.
A reconstituted title was issued in 1991. The heirs of Homer Barque never opposed the application for administrative reconstitution.
Justice Feliciano said in his memorandum to the Court en banc, a copy of which was obtained from the Manotoks, the deed of sale between Setosta and Barque was notarized by a certain Atty. Eliseo Razon on Sept. 24, 1975 and recorded in the notarial register as Doc. No. 416 Page No. 85, Book No. VIII Series of 1975.
Justice Feliciano averred before the Court en banc that the Setosta-Barque deed of sale does not exist in the notarial register of Atty. Eliseo Razon.
What is recorded as Doc. 416, as certified by the clerk of regional trial court of Manila, refers to a special power of attorney executed by one Victoriano A. Sevillano, not to the Setosta-Barque deed of sale.
In fact, none of the documents notarized by Razon on that day of Sept. 24, 1975, refers to the Setosta-Barque deed of sale.
The Barque document is spurious. Justice Santiago and the majority who concurred with her may not have bothered to appreciate any of the questions of facts mentioned earlier and repeated by Justice Feliciano in his obvious quest to inform the Court en banc of the facts and the law applicable in the land dispute.
Barque had to wait for a fire?
Considering that a fire gutted the office of the register of deeds on June 11, 1988 in which the original title of the Barques was burned, one wonders why and how they got to know that they were sitting on huge wealth.
They filed an application for administrative reconstitution only in 1997 or about nine years after the fire.
On the other hand, the Manotoks acted swiftly. They applied for reconstitution of the burned title less than three months after the fire.
They were issued a reconstituted title in 1991.
Justice Feliciano has many questions to ask: (1) Why did Barque buy the Manotok compound when he knew or should have known from the records of the register of deeds of Quezon City that the property was already titled; (2) Why did Barque buy the Manotok compound when he knew or should have known that it was already occupied by parties other than his purported seller; (3) Why did Barque take 8 years to file for reconstitution, if indeed he had held the title to the property since before the fire; (4) Who was Barque’s supposed seller Emiliano Setosta, and how, and from whom, did the latter acquire the Manotok compound?
The questions are begging for answers. Justice Santiago may not have asked those questions when she ruled in favor of the heirs of Homer Barque. She has to answer them in her ponencia which will be voted upon by the Court en banc.