The Republic Act No. 10883, also known as the “New Anti-Carnapping Act of 2016,” is a new law designed to impose stiffer penalties and stricter implementation practices against carjacking, making it a non-bailable offense if the evidence of guilt is strong. It is a newer and stricter version of the Republic Act No. 6539, or the Anti-Carnapping Act of 1972, and was enacted to curb the theft of motor vehicles more effectively. Apparently, RA 6539 was ineffective, hence the new and more comprehensive anti-carnapping law was enacted to address the problem of rampant carnapping that has disenfranchised rightful owners to exercise their property rights.
The new Anti-Carnapping Act lapsed into law under the Duterte administration, effectively repealing the Anti-Carnapping act of 1972 (RA 6539) in the hopes of reducing carnapping incidence and giving vehicle owners peace of mind.
What is RA 10883?
RA 10883 refers to the New Anti-Carnapping Act of 2016. It is a law designed to reduce the incidence of carnapping or the taking, with intent to gain, of a motor vehicle belonging to another without the latter’s consent, or by means of violence against or intimidation of persons, or by using force upon things. It’s a special law against carnapping, a crime that shares similar features and characteristics to robbery and theft, though it is exclusively designed to address the unlawful taking of a motor vehicle.
Scope and Provisions of RA 10883
The New Anti-Carnapping Act of 2016 clearly defines the crimes, requirements and prohibited acts relevant to carnapping in the Philippines as follows:
The crimes of carnapping involves the following:
“Carnapping” refers to the taking, with intent to gain, of a motor vehicle belonging to another without the latter’s consent, or by means of violence against or intimidation of persons, or by using force.
- Concealment of Carnapping
Any person who conceals carnapping shall be punished under the law.
Other prohibited acts include:
- Defacing or tampering with serial numbers of motor vehicle engines/etc.
It shall be unlawful for any person to deface or otherwise tamper with the original or registered serial number of motor vehicle engines, engine blocks and chassis.
- Identity transfer
It shall be unlawful for any person, office or entity to cause and/or allow the sale, registration, and/or transfer into another name, the chassis number, engine number and plate number of a motor vehicle declared as “total wreck” or beyond economic repair by concerned insurance company, and/or law enforcement agencies, due to its involvement in a vehicular accident or for some other causes. The LTO shall cancel the registration of total wreck vehicles as reported by the PNP and/or as declared by the Insurance Commission.
- Transfer of vehicle plate
It shall be unlawful for any person, office or entity to transfer or use a vehicle plate from one vehicle to another without securing the proper authority from the LTO.
- Sale of second hand spare parts
It shall be unlawful for any person, office or entity to buy and/or sell any second hand spare parts taken from a carnapped vehicle.
- Kambal (or double registration)
It shall be unlawful for any person or employee who willfully encodes in the registry of motor vehicles a non-existing vehicle or without history, new identity of already existing vehicle or double/multiple registration (“KAMBAL”) of vehicle.
- Original registration
Any person seeking the original registration of motor vehicles that are either newly assembled or rebuilt or acquired from a registered owner, shall, within one (1) week after the completion of the assembly or rebuilding job or the acquisition from the registered owner, must apply to the Philippine National Police (PNP) for the clearance of the motor vehicle for registration with the LTO.
- Permanent registry of motor vehicle, motor vehicle engines, engine blocks, and chassis
The LTO shall keep a permanent registry of motor vehicle, motor vehicle engines, engine blocks and chassis of all motor vehicles, specifying their type, make, serial numbers and stating therein the names and addresses of their present and previous owners.
- Registration of sale, transfer, conveyance, etc.
Every sale, transfer, conveyance of a motor vehicle, substitution or replacement of a motor vehicle engine, engine block or chassis of a motor vehicle must be registered with the LTO within twenty (20) working days upon purchase/acquisition of a motor vehicle and substitution or replacement of a motor vehicle engine, engine block or chassis. Failure to do so would result in getting the motor vehicle, motor vehicle engine, engine block or chassis to be presumed as a carnapped vehicle, an untaxed imported vehicle, or a vehicle proceeding from illegal sources and confiscated in favor of the government.
- Clearance and permit for assembly or rebuilding
Any person who needs to undertake assembly or rebuilding or cause the assembly or rebuilding of a motor vehicle needs to secure a certificate of clearance from the PNP first. Before doing so, the applicant must provide a statement under oath containing the type, make and serial numbers of the engine, chassis and body, if any, and the complete list of the spare parts of the motor vehicle to be assembled or rebuilt together with the names and addresses of the sources of each.
In the cases of motor vehicle engines to be mounted on motor boats, motor bancas, water crafts and other light water vessels, the applicant also needs to secure a permit from the PNP, which will in turn furnish the LTO pertinent data concerning the motor vehicle engines including their type, make, and serial numbers.
- Clearance for shipment of motor vehicles, etc.
The Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) also needs to submit a report to the PNP within seven (7) days upon boarding all motor vehicles being boarded the “RORO”, ferry, boat, vessel or ship for interisland and international shipment. That said, the PPA shall not allow the loading of motor vehicles in all interisland and international shipping vessels without a motor vehicle clearance from the PNP, except cargo trucks and other trucks carrying goods, Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB)-accredited public utility vehicles (PUV), and other motor vehicles carrying foodstuff and dry goods.
RA 10883 vs RA 6539: Additional Provisions of RA 10883
As mentioned earlier, both RA 6539 and RA 10883 are both known as the Anti-Carnapping Act of the Philippines. Both are meant to reduce carnapping incidents effectively, though RA 10883 can be considered an upgrade to a newer, stricter, and more comprehensive version of RA 6539.
Having said that, RA 10883 includes new provisions for additional and stiffer penalties to the Anti-Carnapping Act, which includes:
- The length of imprisonment or jail time imposed on a person found guilty of carnapping is increased from 14 years and eight months to 17 years and four months under the old law to 20 to 30 years.
- When the carnapping includes violence, intimidation or use of force, the imprisonment sentence is 30 years and one day to 40 years.
- If the owner, driver, occupant of the carnapped motor vehicle was killed or raped, the person found guilty would be sentenced to life imprisonment.
- Any person involved in the concealment of the crime of carnapping would be imprisoned from six to 12 years and fined with the acquisition cost of the motor vehicle, engine or any other part involved in the violation.
- Carnapping is non-bailable if the evidence of guilt is strong.
- Public officials involved in carnapping may also be dismissed from service and ordered perpetually disqualified from public office.
- Those requesting for the original registration of a vehicle need to apply for a clearance from the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Land Transportation Office (LTO).
RA 10883 Penalties
As mentioned, the New Anti-Carnapping Act implements harsher rules and penalties which includes the following:
Any person who is found guilty of carnapping shall be punished as follows regardless of the value of the motor vehicle taken:
- Individual carnapping penalties
- By imprisonment for not less than twenty (20) years and one (1) day but not more than thirty (30) years, when the carnapping is committed without violence against or intimidation of persons, or force upon things;
- By imprisonment for not less than (30) years and one (1) day but not more than forty (40) years, when the carnapping is committed by means of violence against or intimidation of persons, or force upon things;
- With a penalty of life imprisonment when the owner, driver, or occupant of teh carnapped motor vehicle is killed or raped in the commission of the carnapping.
- Any person charged with carnapping or when the crime of carnapping is committed by criminal groups, gangs or syndicates or by means of violence or intimidation of any person or persons or forced upon things; or when the owner, driver, passenger or occupant of the carnapped vehicle is killed or raped in the course of carnapping shall be denied bail when the evidence of guilt is strong.
Concealment of Carnapping
Any person who conceals carnapping shall be punished as follows:
- With imprisonment of six (6) years up to twelve (12) years and a fine equal to the amount of the acquisition cost of the motor vehicle, motor vehicle engine, or any other part involved in the violation if the person in violation is a juridical person, as well as on the president, secretary, and/or members of the board of directors or any of its officers and employees who may have directly participated in the violation.
- Any public official or employee who directly commits unlawful acts in this Act or is guilty of gross negligence of duty or connives with or permits the commission of any of the said unlawful acts shall be penalized as with the following:
- imprisonment of six (6) years up to twelve (12) years
- dismissal from the service,
- having his/her benefits forfeited, and
- permanent disqualification from holding public office
Video: What is RA 10883?
Learn more about the provisions of the New Anti-Carnapping Act of 2016 by watching this explainer video from Mister Criminology:
For your reference, here are some important reminders regarding the RA 10883 or the New Anti-Carnapping Act of 2016:
- The “New Anti-Carnapping Act of 2016” has amended sections of the previous law regarding penalties, definitions, procedures and responsibilities of certain departments.
- Without the anti-carnapping law, the unlawful taking of a motor vehicle is considered either theft or robbery.
- The New Anti-Carnapping Act isn’t only about the theft of motor vehicles. It also includes other crimes related to it like concealment of carnapping, identity transfer, unlawful transfer, sale of parts, etc.
- The severity of the offense is not measured by whether the car is being used in smaller streets or in the highway, but by the very nature of the vehicle itself and the use to which it is devoted.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
For more information, listed here are the common questions and answers regarding the New Anti-Carnapping Act of the Philippines:
1. What are the three (3) elements of carnapping?
The elements of carnapping therefore are: (a) the taking of a motor vehicle which belongs to another; (b) the taking is without the consent of the owner or by means of violence against or intimidation of persons or by using force upon things; and, (c) the taking is done with intent to gain.
2. What is the difference between carnapping and vehicle theft?
Nothing. Essentially, carnapping is the robbery or theft of a motorized vehicle and it becomes qualified or aggravated when, in the course of the commission or on the occasion of the carnapping, the owner, driver, or occupant is killed or raped.
3. What is the body of the vehicle?
The motor vehicle body includes the roof, hood, fenders, trunk lid, doors, and windows.
4. What is body building in carnapping?
“Body-building” is a job undertaken on a motor vehicle in order to replace its entire body with a new body.
5. Is carnapping a civil case?
Under Philippine law, carnapping is a criminal offense that carries severe penalties. Offenders can face imprisonment and fines, depending on the circumstances and gravity of the offense.
The New Anti-Carnapping Act of 2016 is a newer, stricter, and more comprehensive version of the Anti-Carnapping Act of the Philippines. It was signed into law in 2016, as the old one didn’t seem to be working quite as well as the government hoped. In fact, the incidence of carnapping seem to have gone up, prompting the government to take action, hence the enactment of RA 10883 or the New Anti-Carnapping Act of 2016.