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B. Anti-Electricity and Electric Transmission Lines / Materials Pilferage Act of 1994

1. CRIMES

a. Illegal Use of Electricity

It is hereby declared unlawful for any person, whether natural or juridical, public or private, to:

1) Tap, make or cause to be made any connection with overhead lines, service drops, or other electric service wires, without previous authority or consent of the private electric utility or rural electric cooperative concerned;

2) Tap, make or cause to be made any connection to the existing electric service facilities of any duly registered consumer without the latter’s or the electric utility’s consent or authority;

3) Tamper, install or use a tampered electrical meter, jumper, current reversing transformer, shorting or shunting wire, loop connection or any other device which interferes with the proper or accurate registry or metering of electric current or otherwise results in its diversion in a manner whereby electricity is stolen or wasted;

4) Damage or destroy an electric meter, equipment, wire or conduit or allow any of them to be so damaged or destroyed as to interfere with the proper or accurate metering of electric current; and

5) Knowingly use or receive the direct benefit of electric service obtained through any of the acts mentioned in subsections (a), (b), (c), and (d) above. (Section 2, R.A. 7832, Anti-electricity and Electric Transmission Lines/Materials Pilferage Act of 1994)

b. Theft of Electric Power Transmission Lines and Materials

It is hereby declared unlawful for any person to:

1) Cut, saw, slice, separate, split, severe, smelt, or remove any electric power transmission line/material or meter from a tower, pole, or any other installation or place of installation or any other place or site where it may be rightfully or lawfully stored, deposited, kept, stocked, inventoried, situated or located, without the consent of the owner, whether or not the act is done for profit or gain;

2) Take, carry away or remove or transfer, with or without the use of a motor vehicle or other means of conveyance, any electric power transmission line/material or meter from a tower, pole, any other installation or place of installation, or any place or site where it may be rightfully or lawfully stored, deposited, kept, stocked, inventoried, situated or located without the consent of the owner, whether or not the act is done for profit or gain;

3) Store, possess or otherwise keep in his premises, custody or control, any electric power transmission line/material or meter without the consent of the owner, whether or not the act is done for profit or gain; and

4) Load, carry, ship or move from one place to another, whether by land, air or sea, any electrical power transmission line/material, whether or not the act is done for profit or gain, without first securing a clearance/permit for the said purpose from its owner or the National Power Corporation (NPC) or its regional office concerned, as the case may be. (Section 3[a], Ibid.)

ELECTRICAL POWER TRANSMISSION LINE/MATERIAL: (b) For purposes of this section, “electrical power transmission line/material” refers to electric power transmission steel towers, woodpoles, cables, wires, insulators, line hardwares, electrical conductors and other related items with a minimum voltage of sixty-nine kilovolts (69 kv), such as the following:

1) Steel transmission line towers made of galvanized steel angular members and plates or creosoted and/or lannelized woodpoles/ concrete poles and designed to carry and support the conductors;

2) Aluminum conductor steel reinforced (ACSR) in excess of one hundred (100) MCM;

3) Overhead ground wires made of 7 strands of galvanized steel wires, 3.08 millimeters in diameter and designed to protect the electrical conductors from lightning strikes;

4) Insulators made of porcelain or glass shell and designed to insulate the electrical conductors from steel towers or woodpoles; and

5) Various transmission line hardwares and materials made of aluminum alloy or malleable steel and designed to interconnect the towers, conductors, ground wires, and insulators mentioned in subparagraphs (1), (2), (3), and (4) above for the safe and reliable operation of the transmission lines. (Section 3[b], Ibid.)

PRIMA FACIE EVIDENCE: The presence of any of the following circumstances shall constitute prima facie evidence of illegal use of electricity, by the person benefitted thereby, and shall be the basis for: (a) the immediate disconnection by the electric utility to such person after due notice, (b) the holding of a preliminary investigation by the prosecutor and the subsequent filing in court of the pertinent information, and (c) the lifting of any temporary restraining order or injunction which may have been issued against a private electric utility or rural electric cooperative:

1) The presence of a bored hole on the glass cover of the electric meter, or at the back or any other part of said meter;

2) The presence inside the electric meter of salt, sugar and other elements that could result in the inaccurate registration of the meter’s internal parts to prevent its accurate registration of consumption of electricity;

3) The existence of any wiring connection which affects the normal operation or registration of the electric meter;

4) The presence of a tampered, broken, or fake seal on the meter, or mutilated, altered or tampered meter recording chart or graph, or computerized chart, graph, or log;

5) The presence in any part of the building or its premises which is subject to the control of the consumer or on the electric meter, of a current reversing transformer, jumper, shorting and/or shunting wire, and/or loop connection or any other similar device;

6) The mutilation, alteration, reconnection, disconnection, bypassing or tampering of instruments, transformers, and accessories;

7) The destruction of, or attempt to destroy, any integral accessory of the metering device box which encases an electric meter, or its metering accessories; and

8) The acceptance of money and/or other valuable consideration by any officer of employee of the electric utility concerned or the making of such an offer to any such officer or employee for not reporting the presence of any of the circumstances enumerated in subparagraphs (1), (2), (3), (4), (5), (6), or (7) hereof: Provided, however, That the discovery of any of the foregoing circumstances, in order to constitute prima facie evidence, must be personally witnessed and attested to by an officer of the law or a duly authorized representative of the Energy Regulatory Board (ERB). (Section 4[a], Ibid.)

SAME; POSSESSION OR CUSTODY OF ELECTRIC POWER TRANSMISSION LINE/MATERIAL: The possession or custody of electric power transmission line/material by any person, natural or juridical, not engaged in the transformation, transmission or distribution of electric power, or in the manufacture of such electric power transmission line/material shall be prima facie evidence that such line/material is the fruit of the offense defined in Section 3 hereof and therefore such line/material may be confiscated from the person in possession, control or custody thereof. (Section 4[b], Ibid.)

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