Legal Questions

May a prosecutor be compelled to file a particular complaint or information?

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No.  A prosecutor is under no compulsion to file a particular criminal information where he is not convinced that he has evidence to support the allegations thereof.  Neither an injunction, preliminary or final, nor a writ of prohibition may be issued by the courts to restrain a criminal prosecution except in the extreme case where it is necessary for the courts to do so for the orderly administration of justice or to prevent the use of the strong arm of the law in an oppressive and vindictive manner.

The exercise of such judgment and discretion may generally not be compelled by mandamus, except if the prosecutor shows evident bias in filing the information and refuses to include a co-accused without justification.  But before filing for mandamus to compel a fiscal to include another co-accused in the information, the party must first avail himself of other remedies such as the filing of a motion for inclusion.

Instances when an injunctive writ may issue:

  1. To afford protection to the constitutional rights of the accused.
  2. If it is necessary to the orderly administration of justice or to avoid oppression or multiplicity of suits.
  3. To avoid threatened and unlawful arrest.
  4. If there is double jeopardy.
  5. If there is clearly no prima facie case.
  6. If the acts of the officer are without or in excess of authority.
  7. When there is a prejudicial question.
  8. When the prosecution is under an invalid law.

Instances when a writ of certiorari may be available in criminal actions:

  1. When necessary to afford adequate protection to the constitutional rights of the accused.
  2. When necessary for the orderly administration of justice or to avoid oppression or multiplicity of actions.
  3. When there is a pre-judicial question which is sub-judice.
  4. When the acts of the officer are without or in excess of authority.
  5. Where the prosecution is under an invalid law, ordinance, or regulation.
  6. When double jeopardy is clearly apparent.
  7. Where the court has no jurisdiction over the offense.
  8. Where it is a case of persecution rather than prosecution.
  9. Where the charges are manifestly false and motivated by the lust of vengeance.

10.  When there is clearly no prima facie case against the accused and a motion to quash on that ground has been denied.

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