LAW EACH WEEK
KIDNAPPING for ‘Ransom, or simple Illegal Detention, is rampant trade among those who rebel against the government because this is how they can only make fast money. But the government has issued a no-ransom policy. So the best way is not to get kidnapped and the best way is to know the elements of the crime, and its penalties and consequences.
What are the elements of kidnapping and serious illegal detention?
The elements of the crime are 1) Offender is a private individual; 2) He kidnaps or detains another, or in any other manner deprives the latter of his liberty; 3) The act of detention or kidnapping must be illegal; and 4) In the commission of the offense, any of the following circumstances is present: a) The kidnapping lasts for more than 3 days; b) it is committed simulating public authority; c) Any serious physical injuries are inflicted upon the person kidnapped or detained or threats to kill him are made; or d) The person kidnapped or detained is a minor, female, or a public officer. (Article 267, Revised Penal Code)
Should there be actual confinement in an enclosure for the crime of kidnapping to take place?
In the crime of kidnapping, what is essential is confinement or restriction of the person of the offended party. It is not necessary that the victim be placed in an enclosure, as long as he is deprived, in any manner, of his liberty.
In the case of People v Cortes (GR No. 131619- 20, Feb 1, 2000), the Court ruled that it suffices that there be actual or manifest restraint on the person or liberty of the victim. Accused were guilty of kidnapping although the victim was found, at the time of her rescue, outside of the house where she was brought, talking to the house owner who was the uncle of the accused for in kidnapping, it is not necessary that the offended party be kept within an enclosure to restrict her freedom of locomotion.
Should there be ransom for the crime of kidnapping to occur?
No. When the act of kidnapping someone was done for the purposes of extorting ransom, then the crime committed is kidnapping with ransom. The act of extorting money “qualifies” the kidnapping and makes the act of extortion an aggravating circumstance.
Ransom is defined as the money, price or consideration paid or demanded for redemption of a captured person or persons, a payment that releases a person from captivity. Actual demand for ransom not necessary, as long as it can be proven that the kidnapping was done for the purpose of extorting money.
What is the difference between kidnapping and the crime of forcible abduction?
The crime of forcible abduction is committed against any woman where there is deprivation of liberty and done with lewd designs. On the other hand, kidnapping is the deprivation of liberty without lewd designs and commission of other crimes during confinement of victim is immaterial to the charge of kidnapping with serious illegal detention.