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PEOPLE V. VILLANUEVA- Disbarment
FACTS: On Sept. 4, 1959, the Chief of Police of Alaminos, Laguna, charged SImplicio Villanueva with crime of Malicious Mischiedf, before the Justice of the Peace Court of said Municipality. Said accused was represented by counsel de oficio, but later on replaced by counsel de parte. The complainant in the same case was representry by City Attorney Ariston Fule of San Pablo City, having entered his appearance as private-prosecutor, having secuting the permission of the the Secretary of Justice.
Counsel for the accused presented a “Motion in inhibit Fiscal Fule from Acting as Private prosecutor in this case, “this time invoking sec. 32, Rule 127, now sec. 35, Rule 138, Revised Rules, which bars certain attorneys from practicing.
ISSUE: Whether of not Atty. Fule violate sec. 32 of Rule 127 now Sec. 35, Rule 138, revised Rules of Court, which bars certain attorneys from practicing.
RULING: The Court holds that the appearance of Attorney Fule did not constitute private practice, within the meaning and contemplation of the Rules. Practice is more than isolated appearance, for it consists in frequent or customary action, a succession of acts of the same kind. The word private practice of law implies that one must have presented himself to be in the active and continued practice of the legal profession and that his professional services are available to the public for compensation, as a source of his livelihood or in consideration of his said services. It has never been refuted that City Attorney Fule had been given permission by his immediate supervisor, the Secretary of Justice, to represent the complainant in the case at bar, who is a relative.