Roan v. Gonzales, 145 SCRA 687 (1986) F: The challenged SW was issued by the resp. judge on 5/10/84. The petitioner''s house was searched 2 days later but none of the articles listed in the warrant was discovered. The officers conducting the search found 1 colt Magnum revolver & 18 live bullets w/c they confiscated. They are now the bases of the charge against the petitioner. RULING: Search warrant issued by resp. judge is hereby declared null and void and accordingly set aside. The petitioner claims that no depositions were taken by the resp. judge in accordance w/ Rule 126, Sec. 4 of the ROC, but this is not entirely true. Depositions were taken of the complainant''s 2 witnesses in addition to the affidavit executed by them. It is correct to say, however, that the complainant himself was not subjected to a similar interrogation. By his own accounts, all that resp. judge did was question Capt. Quillosa on the contents of his affidavit only "to ascertain among others, if he knew and understood the same," and only bec. "the application was not yet subscribed and sworn to." The suggestion is that he would not have asked any questions at all if the affidavit had already been completed when it was submitted to him. In any case, he did not ask his own searching questions. He limited himself to the contents of the affidavit. He did not take the applicant''s deposition in writing and attach them to the record, together w/ the affidavit presented to him. Such written deposition is necessary in order that the Judge may be able to properly determine the existence or non-existence of the probable cause, to hold liable for perjury the person giving it if it will be found later that his declarations are false. (Mata v. Bayona.) The applicant was asking for the issuance of the SW on the basis of mere hearsay and not of info. personally known to him. His application, standing alone, was insufficient to justify the issuance of the warrant sought.
It was, therefore, necessary for the witnesses themselves, by their own personal info., to establish the applicant''s claims. Even assuming then that it would have suffied to take the deposition only of the witnesses and not of the applicant himself, there is still the question of the sufficiency of their depositions. A study of the deposition taken from witnesess Esmael Morada and Jesus Tohilida, who both claimed to be "intelligence informers," shows that they were in the main a mere restatement of their allegations in their affidavits, except that they were made in the form of answers to the questions put to them by the resp. judge. One may well wonder why it did not occur to the resp. judge to ask how the witness could be so certain even as to the caliber of the guns, or how far he was from the window, or whether it was on the first floor or second floor, or why his presence was not noticed at all, or if the acts related were really done openly, in the full view of the witnesses, considering that these acts were against the law. These would have been judicious questions but they were injudiciously omitted. Instead, the declaration of the witnesses were readily accepted and the warrant sought was issued forthwith. SOL-GEN ARGUES THAT THE PETITIONER WAIVED WHATEVER DEFECT WHEN THE PETITIONER VOLUNTARILY SUBMITTED TO THE SEARCH AND MANIFESTED HIS CONFORMITY IN WRITING. We do not agree. What we see here is pressure exerted by the military authorities, who practically coerced the petitioner to sign the supposed waiver as guaran