G.R. No. 168137, August 07, 2013 - SECRETARY OF THE DEPARTMENT OF FINANCE, Petitioner, v. COURT OF TAX APPEALS (SECOND DIVISION) AND KUTANGBATO CONVENTIONAL TRADING MULTI-PURPOSE COOPERATIVE, Respondents.
G.R. No. 168137, August 07, 2013
SECRETARY OF THE DEPARTMENT OF FINANCE, Petitioner, v. COURT OF TAX APPEALS (SECOND DIVISION) AND KUTANGBATO CONVENTIONAL TRADING MULTI-PURPOSE COOPERATIVE,1 Respondents.
R E S O L U T I O N
1 “Kutang Bato Conventional Trading Multi-Purpose Cooperative” in some parts of the records.
2Rollo, pp. 2-42.
3 Id. at 156-157. Issued by Associate Justices Juanito C. Castañeda, Jr., Olga P. Enriquez, and Erlinda P. Uy.
4 Id. at 44-47. Issued by Associate Justices Juanito C. Castañeda, Jr. and Erlinda P. Uy, with Associate Justice Olga P. Enriquez dissenting.
5 Id. at 146-148. Dated October 18, 2004.
6 Id. at 60. In particular, paragraphs (F), (G,) (L)1, (L)3, and (L)5, Section 2530 of the TCCP.
7 “AN ACT TO REVISE AND CODIFY THE TARIFF AND CUSTOMS CODE OF THE PHILIPPINES.”
8Rollo, p. 48.nadcralawlibrary
9 Id. at 48-49.redcralaw
10 Id. at 48 and 114.
11 Id. at 49.
13 Id. at 48-66.
14 Id. at 62-63. According to Dela Cuesta, Section 2503 of the TCCP pertains to misdeclarations/misclassifications on the face of the import entry, and before payment of assessable taxes and duties which does not hold true in the case at bar. In this light, he cites Section 1202 of the TCCP which provides that importation is deemed terminated upon payment of duties and taxes, and after the goods have left the jurisdiction of the customs. The foregoing TCCP provisions pertinently read as follows:Sec. 1202. When Importation Begins and Deemed Terminated. - Importation begins when the carrying vessel or aircraft enters the jurisdiction of the Philippines with intention to unlade therein. Importation is deemed terminated upon payment of the duties, taxes and other charges due upon the articles, or secured to be paid, at a port of entry and the legal permit for withdrawal shall have been granted, or in case said articles are free of duties, taxes and other charges, until they have legally left the jurisdiction of the customs.15 Id. at 61.
Sec. 2503. Undervaluation, Misclassification and Misdeclaration in Entry. - When the dutiable value of the imported articles shall be so declared and entered that the duties, based on the declaration of the importer on the face of the entry, x x x. (Emphases supplied)
16 Id. at 63.
17 Id. at 61 and 64.
18 Id. at 65-66.
19 Id. at 67. See 1st Indorsement of Commissioner Antonio M. Bernardo. Pursuant to RA 7651, amending Section 2313 of the TCCP.
20Rollo, pp. 73-76.
21 Id. at 76.
22 Id. at 78-81.
23 Sec. 2313. Review by Commissioner. - The person aggrieved by the decision or action of the Collector in any matter presented upon protest or by his action in any case of seizure may, within fifteen (15) days after notification in writing by the Collector of his action or decision, file a written notice to the Collector with a copy furnished to the Commissioner of his intention to appeal the action or decision of the Collector to the Commissioner. Thereupon the Collector shall forthwith transmit all the records of the proceedings to the Commissioner, who shall approve, modify or reverse the action or decision of the Collector and take such steps and make such orders as may be necessary to give effect to his decision: Provided, That when an appeal is filed beyond the period herein prescribed, the same shall be deemed dismissed.
If in any seizure proceedings, the Collector renders a decision adverse to the Government, such decision shall be automatically reviewed by the Commissioner and the records of the case elevated within five (5) days from the promulgation of the decision of the Collector. The Commissioner shall render a decision of the automatic appeal within thirty (30) days from receipt of the records of the case. If the Collector's decision is reversed by the Commissioner, the decision of the Commissioner shall be final and executory. However, if the Collector's decision is affirmed, or if within thirty (30) days from receipt of the records of the case by the Commissioner no decision is rendered or the decision involves imported articles whose published value is Five million pesos (P5,000,000) or more, such decision shall be deemed automatically appealed to the Secretary of Finance and the records of the proceedings shall be elevated within five (5) days from the promulgation of the decision of the Commissioner or of the Collector under appeal, as the case may be: Provided, further, That if the decision of the Commissioner or of the Collector under appeal, as the case may be, is affirmed by the Secretary of Finance, or if within thirty (30) days from receipt of the records of the proceedings by the Secretary of Finance, no decision is rendered, the decision of the Secretary of Finance, or of the Commissioner, or of the Collector under appeal, as the case may be, shall become final and executory.
In any seizure proceeding, the release of imported articles shall not be allowed unless and until a decision of the Collector has been confirmed in writing by the Commissioner of Customs.
24Rollo, p. 85.red cralawlibrary
25 Id. at 89-108.
26 Id. at 146-148.
27 Id. at 149-155. See Opposition dated December 8, 2004.
28 Id. at 150-151.
29 148-B Phil. 273 (1971).
30Rollo, pp. 151-153.
31 Id. at 156-157.
32 Id. at 44-47.
33 Id. at 45-46.
34 Id. at 46-47.
35 Id. at 394 and 397.
36 Referring to the August 6, 2008 Decision in C.T.A. Case No. 7028.cralaw
37Rollo, p. 397.
38 See Section 2313 of the TCCP; supra note 23.
39Rollo, pp. 394 and 397.
40 “A case becomes moot when there is no more actual controversy between the parties or no useful purpose can be served in passing upon the merits. Courts will not determine a moot question in a case in which no practical relief can be granted. It is unnecessary to indulge in academic discussion of a case presenting a moot question, as a judgment thereon cannot have any practical legal effect or, in the nature of things, cannot be enforced.” (Baldo, Jr. v. Commission on Elections, G.R. No. 176135, June 16, 2009, 589 SCRA 306, 310-311.)
41Rollo, pp. 45-46 and 208.
42 The pertinent portions of the Geotina ruling reads:The issue reduces itself quite simply and essentially to whether or not the fresh apples in question are “articles of prohibited importation.” If so, as the Court holds, then the tax court acted in excess of its jurisdiction in overturning the customs authorities’ proper exercise of their jurisdiction under section 1207 of the Customs Code, in preventing importation and refusing to allow the discharge of the shipment of apples, which admittedly is not covered by the required Central Bank permit or release certificate. By the same token, since the importation of said apples is banned under the cited Central Bank circulars which have the force and effect of law, the tax court acted without authority of law in ordering the commissioner to release the apples to the importer under bond, for under the very section 2301 of the customs code invoked by it, “articles the importation of which is prohibited by law shall not be released under bond.” (Geotina v. CTA, supra note 29 at 282-283; emphases supplied.)43Alberto v. Court of Appeals, G.R. Nos. 182130 and 182132, June 19, 2013, citing Tavera-Luna, Inc. v. Nable, 67 Phil. 340, 344 (1939).
44Yu v. Reyes-Carpio, G.R. No. 189207, June 15, 2011, 652 SCRA 341, 348. (Citation omitted)
45 See Chua Huat v. Court of Appeals, 276 Phil. 1, 18 (1991).