Filing a criminal case against another person is a serious matter as it entails possible jail time and/or monetary penalties. If you wish to file this case against a real estate scammer, proceed with the following:
Get your facts straight
Similar to filing a civil case, it would be best to gather all documents and evidence available at your disposal in order to come up with a strong argument. Try looking up the appropriate charge you want to file online, but it is more advisable and convenient to hire the legal services of a lawyer.
File your case with the prosecutor’s office
When dealing with scammers, the usual charge is estafa or swindling, punishable under Article 315 of the Revised Penal Code. To institute criminal proceedings, a Complaint-Affidavit must be filed with the Office of the Prosecutor, who, in turn, shall file a case following the finding of probable cause. It is important to note that venue of the crime is a jurisdictional issue, which is why the claimant must file in the prosecutor’s office of the place where he was swindled by the scammer.
Institute the appropriate civil action
As a general rule, the Revised Rules of Court Rule 111 Section 1 provides that a civil action is deemed instituted with the criminal action, unless it is waived, reserved, or instituted separately. Filing a criminal case against scammers will thus also entail the determination of its civil aspect, depending on the mode chosen by the plaintiff.