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  OFFICE OF THE CITY MAYOR OF PARAÑAQUE CITY VS. MARIO D.EBIO AND HIS CHILDREN/HEIRS   G.R. No. 178411 June 23, 2010 FACTS: Respondents claim that they are the absolute owners of a parcel of located Parañaque City and covered by Tax Declaration in the name of respondent Mario D. Ebio. Said land was an accretion of Cut-cut creek. Respondents assert that the srcinal occupant and possessor of the said parcel of land was their great grandfather, Jose Vitalez. Sometime in 1930, Jose gave the land to his son, Pedro Vitalez. From then on, Pedro continuously and exclusively occupied and possessed the said lot. In 1966, after executing an affidavit declaring possession and occupancy. Pedro was able to obtain a tax declaration over the said property in his name. Since then, respondents have been religiously paying real property taxes for the said property. Meanwhile, in 1961, respondent Mario Ebio married Pedro’s daughter, Zenaida. Upon Pedro’s advice, the cou ple established their home on the said lot. In April 1964 and in October 1971, Mario Ebio secured building permits from the Parañaque municipal office for the construction of their house within the said compound. [7]  On April 21, 1987, Pedro executed a notarized Transfer of Rights [8]  ceding his claim over the entire parcel of land in favor of Mario Ebio. Subsequently, the tax declarations under Pedro’s name were cancelled and new ones were issued in Mario Ebio’s name. [9]  On March 30, 1999, the Office of the Sangguniang Barangay   of Vitalez passed Resolution No. 08, series of 1990 seeking assistance from theCity Government of Parañaque for the construction of an access road alongCut-cut Creek located in the said barangay. The proposed road will run from Urma Drive to the main road of Vitalez Compound traversing the lot occupied by the respondents. Respondents immediately opposed and the project was suspended. In January 2003, however, respondents were surprised when several officials from the barangay and the city planning office proceeded to cut eight (8) coconut trees planted on the said lot. On March 28, 2005, the City Administrator sent a letter to the respondents ordering them to vacate the area within the next thirty (30) days, or be physically evicted from the said property. Respondents sent a reply, asserting their claim over the subject property and expressing intent for a further dialogue. The request remained unheeded. Threatened of being evicted, respondents went to the RTC of Parañaque City on April 21, 2005 and applied for a writ of preliminary injunction against petitioners. ISSUE: Whether or not the State may build on the land in question.  HELD: No. It is an uncontested fact that the subject land was formed from the alluvial deposits that have gradually settled along the banks of Cut-cut creek. This being the case, the law that governs ownership over the accreted portion is Article 84 of the Spanish Law of Waters of 1866, which remains in effect, in relation to Article 457 of the Civil Code. ART. 84. Accretions deposited gradually upon lands contiguous to creeks, streams, rivers, and lakes, by accessions or sediments from the waters thereof, belong to the owners of such lands. Art. 457. To the owners of lands adjoining the banks of rivers belong the accretion which they gradually receive from the effects of the current of the waters. It is therefore explicit from the foregoing provisions that alluvial deposits along the banks of a creek do not form part of the public domain as the alluvial property automatically belongs to the owner of the estate to which it may have been added. The only restriction provided for by law is that the owner of the adjoining property must register the same under the Torrens system; otherwise, the alluvial property may be subject to acquisition through prescription by third persons. In contrast, properties of public dominion cannot be acquired by prescription. No matter how long the possession of the properties has been, there can be no prescription against the State regarding property of public domain. Even a city or municipality cannot acquire them by prescription as against the State. Hence, while it is true that a creek is a property of public dominion, the land which is formed by the gradual and imperceptible accumulation of sediments along its banks does not form part of the public domain by clear provision of law.  MARIO C. RONQUILLO VS. COURT OF APPEALS G.R. No. L-43346 March 20, 1991 FACTS: Del Rosario owns a registered land adjacent to Estero Calubcub which is already dried up due to the dumping of garbage by the surrounding neighborhood and not by any natural causes. Defendant now occupies said dried up land until Del Rosario, claiming ownership over the same, required him to vacate on the basis of Article 370 of the Civil Code which provides that riparian owner owns the dried up river bed abandoned by natural changes. ISSUE:  Whether the dried-up portion of Estero Calubcub being claimed by herein petitioner was caused by a natural change in the course of the waters and Article 370 applies.  HELD: Under Art. 370 of the Civil Code, “The beds of rivers, which are abandoned because of a natural change in the course of the waters, belong to the owners of the riparian lands throughout the respective length of each. If the abandoned bed divided tenements belonging to different owners the new dividing line shall be equidistant from one and the other.”  The law is clear and unambiguous. It leaves no room for interpretation. Article 370 applies only if there is a natural change in the course of the waters. The rules on alluvion do not apply to man-made or artificial accretions nor to accretions to lands that adjoin canals or esteros or artificial drainage systems. 24  Considering our earlier finding that the dried-up portion of Estero Calubcub was actually caused by the active intervention of man, it follows that Article 370 does not apply to the case at bar and, hence, the Del Rosarios cannot be entitled thereto supposedly as riparian owners. The dried-up portion of Estero Calubcub should thus be considered as forming part of the land of the public domain which cannot be subject to acquisition by private ownership. Lastly, the fact that petitioner and herein private respondents filed their sales applications with the Bureau of Lands covering the subject dried-up portion of Estero Calubcub cannot but be deemed as outright admissions by them that the same is public land. They are now estopped from claiming otherwise.  HEIRS OF MANUEL A. ROXAS and TRINIDAD DE LEON VDA . DE   ROXAS VS. COURT OF APPEALS and MAGUESUN MANAGEMENT & DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION G.R. No. 118436. March 21, 1997 FACTS: Maguesun Corporation filed an Application for Registration of two parcels of unregistered land located in Tagaytay. In support of its application for registration they presented a Deed of Absolute Sale dated June 10, 1990, executed by Zenaida Melliza as vendor who bought the property from Trinidad de Leon vda. de Roxas two and a half months earlier, as evidenced by a Deed of Sale dated March 26, 1990 and an Affidavit of Self-Adjudication dated March 24, 1990. Notices of the initial hearing were sent by the Land Registration Authority to Hilario Luna, Jose Gil and Leon Luna while Trinidad de Leon vda. de Roxas was not notified because she was not named as an adjoining owner, occupant or adverse claimant. Publication was made in the Official Gazette and the Record Newsweekly. After an Order of general default was issued, the trial court proceeded to hear the land registration case. On October 4, 1990, LRA reported that the subject parcels of land had previously been applied for registration at the CFI of Cavite by Manuel A. Roxas and Trinidad de Leon but no decision has been made. February 13, 1991 the RTC granted Maguesun Corporation's application for registration. Consequently RTC issued the Order for Issuance of the Decree on March 14, 1991, after it ordered the application of Manuel A. Roxas and Trinidad de Leon dismissed. It was only when the caretaker of the property was being asked to vacate the land that petitioner Trinidad de Leon Vda. De Roxas learned of its sale and the registration of the lots in Maguesun Corporation's name. Hence, she filed a petition for review before the RTC to set aside the decree of registration on the ground that Maguesun Corporation committed actual fraud, alleging that her signature was forged in both the Deed of Sale and the Affidavit of Self-Adjudication; that Maguesun Corporation intentionally omitted her name as an adverse claimant, occupant or adjoining owner in the application for registration submitted to the LRA, such that the latter could not send her a Notice of Initial Hearing RTC that Maguesun Corporation did not commit actual fraud and dismissed the petition for review of decree of registration April 15, 1992. CA affirmed the findings of RTC, ruling that Roxas failed to and demonstrate that there was actual or extrinsic fraud, not merely constructive or intrinsic fraud, a prerequisite for purposes of annuling a judgment or reviewing a decree of registration. Hence this petition  ISSUE: Whether or not private respondent Maguesun Corporation committed actual fraud in obtaining a decree of registration over two unregistered parcels of land in Tagaytay City, actual fraud being the only ground to reopen or review a decree of registration.
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