[G.R. No. 9855. October 6, 1914. ]
CHUA SHUN, Plaintiff-Appellee, v. THE INSULAR COLLECTOR OF CUSTOMS, Defendant-Appellant.
Solicitor-General Corpus, for Appellant.
Beaumont, Tenney & Ferrier for Appellee.
1. ALIENS; CHINESE; EIGHT OF MINORS TO REMAIN IN TERRITORY OF THE UNITED STATES. — When a Chinese minor has been admitted into territory of the United States as the minor child of a resident Chinese merchant, he has a right to remain in said territory and does not lose such rig ht by the death of his parents.
D E C I S I O N
From an examination of the record, the following facts seem to be established by a large preponderance of the evidence:chanrob1es virtual 1aw library
First. That the said Chua Shun is a person of Chinese descent, a minor about 20 years of age, and the legitimate son of Chua Pingco.
Second. That the said Chua Pingco was a Chinese merchant and a resident of the Philippine Islands.
Third. That the said Chua Shun came to the Philippine Islands the first time when he was about 11 years of age, in the year 1903 or 1904, and was permitted to enter the Islands as the minor and legitimate son of Chua Pingco.
Fourth. That the said Chua Shun remained in the Philippine Islands until the year 1907, when he returned to China, in company with his father; that he returned from China to the Philippine Islands in the same year (1907), with his father and they were both permitted to enter.
Fifth. That the said Chua Shun remained in the Philip- pine Islands after his return in 1907, until the month of November, 1909, when he again visited China.
Sixth. That the said Chua Pingco, while still a resident merchant of the Philippine Islands, died in the city of Manila, on the 10th day of January, 1909.
Seventh. That Chua Pingco left an estate in the Philip- pine Islands valued at about P186,000.
Eighth. That an administrator was duly appointed for his estate; that a guardian was appointed for his minor children; that before Chua Shun returned to China in the month of November, 1909, he obtained permission of the court, as well as the consent of his guardian, so to do.
Ninth. That the share of the estate of Chua Pingco belonging to the said Chua Shun was more than P6,000.
Tenth. That Chua Shun was engaged in the cigarette business in the city of Manila.
Eleventh. That he returned to the Philippine Islands on the steamship Taisang on the 2d day of January, 1913 while he was still a minor of about 20 years of age, and was refused admission, upon the ground that he was a person of Chinese descent.
The board of special inquiry, after hearing the evidence presented by the said Chua Shun relating to his right to land in the Philippine Islands, in its order denying to him the right to enter, said: "As the only right of the detained to enter the Philippine Islands would be the actual presence of his father, the board finds and decides that the said Chua Shun is coming to the Philippine Islands without the certificate required by law for the admission of Chinese of the exempt class, and he is, therefore, refused landing."cralaw virtua1aw library
From this decision Chua Shun appealed to the Insular Collector of Customs. In passing upon the questions presented by the appeal, the Honorable B. Herstein, Insular Collector of Customs, among other things, said: "He cannot be admitted as the legitimate minor son of a resident Chinese merchant, by reason of the fact that not alone at the time of his entrance on January 2, 1913, but also at the time of his departure in November, 1909, his father was dead."cralaw virtua1aw library
Immediately after the petitioner was denied the right to admission into the Philippine Islands, he presented a petition for the writ of habeas corpus in the Court of First Instance of the city of Manila. The petition was duly considered by the Honorable A. S. Crossfield, judge, who found as a fact: "That Chua Shun is the minor son of a Chinese merchant, residing in and doing business in the city of Manila, and that the petitioner resided, as such minor son, in the city of Manila for more than five years; that his father died and the petitioner succeeded to a portion of his father’s mercantile business, as heir thereto, and, because of his minor age, became a ward of this court and was allowed to leave the Philippine Islands, by order of the court, on account of his health; that upon his return from his journey of health seeking, he was refused landing in the Philippine Islands, on the ground that his father was no longer a resident of the Philippine Islands."cralaw virtua1aw library
Upon the foregoing facts, the lower court reversed the order of the Collector of Customs and admitted Chua Shun into the Philippine Islands. From that order the Insular Collector of Customs appealed to this court.
The only question which is left for us to decide is whether or not the death of the father of Chua Shun had the effect of depriving him of the right to continue to reside in the Philippine Islands. It will be remembered that he was permitted to land as the legitimate minor son of Chua Pingco and had continued to reside in the Philippine Islands with his father for a period of more than three years, and that the occasion of his leaving the islands ten or eleven months after the death of his father was to regain his health. We do not believe, had he remained in the Philippine Islands after the death of his father, that he could have been deported upon any theory, having once been admitted as the legitimate minor son of a resident Chinese merchant. As such legitimate minor son, having once been admitted and having become a part of the population of the country, we do not believe that the mere death of his father had the effect of depriving him of his right to remain. And if he had the right to remain, we cannot understand upon what theory he lost his residence in the Philippine Islands, simply by the fact that he left the Islands for a short period for the purpose of regaining his health. It is true that when he left the Islands on the 2d day of January, 1909, he did not get the usual document from the Insular Collector of Customs which is obtained by Chinamen generally who leave the Philippine Islands with the intention of returning. At that time, however, we are of the opinion that such certificate was unnecessary. (U. S. v. Gue Lim, 176 U. S., 459; Lo Po v. McCoy, 8 Phil. Rep., 343; U. S. v. Yu Kiao, 20 Phil. Rep., 307.) We do not believe that Congress intended, when it adopted the Chinese Exclusion Laws, to prohibit Chinese aliens from continuing to reside in the territory of the United States, under the circumstances such as exist in the present case. Neither do we believe, after the minor children of resident Chinese merchants in the territory of the United States have been admitted and have resided in such territory with their parents, that they lose their right to remain in or to reenter said territory, simply because subsequent to their entrance their parents have died. (U. S. v. Gue Lim, 176 U. S., 459; U. S. v. Yu Kiao, 20 Phil. Rep., 307.)
Therefore the judgment of the lower court is hereby affirmed, with costs.
Arellano, C.J., Torres, Carson and Araullo, JJ., concur.
Moreland, J., concurs in the result.