POLICE Regional Office 13 director Brig. Gen. Romeo Caramat Jr. yesterday announced the arrest of a barangay official and two others in Agusan del Sur transporting thousands of live AK-47 ammunition and rifle grenades intended for use by the local New People’s Army.
In a report to Philippine National Police chief Gen. Guillermo Lorenzo Eleazar, the Caraga police director identified the arrested suspects as Ferdinand Dagium, a 27-year-old kagawad of Bgy. Magsaysay in Sibagat; his brother Rolando, a 34-year-old driver; and Marvin Merencillo, 26, of Purok 1, Bgy. Mount Ararat in Bayugan City, Agusan del Sur.
Caramat said the three were intercepted while in possession of 4,800 pieces of cal. 7.62 ammunition for AK-47 automatic rifles, two rifle grenades and assorted food supplies at Purok 1 in Bgy. Pianing, Butuan City around 8:10 p.m. last Friday.
Three motorcycles being driven by the accused were impounded by the local police.
“We have reasons to believe that the three are acting as logistics officers of the CPP-NPA Northeastern Mindanao Regional Party Committee. They are the ones procuring weapons and ammunition for the local NPA movement, Caramat said.
Members of the PRO13 Regional Intelligence 13 led by Lt. Col. Rommel Villamor, with the help of officers from the Butuan City Police Station led by Maj. Rodel Dorado and Maj. Randie Azote, intercepted the three at a checkpoint in Bgy. Pianing.
Soldiers from the Army’ 65th Infantry Battalion also provided support to the policemen during the conduct of the operation in the area, which is known for having a considerable number of NPA members and supporters.
The arrested suspects and the recovered weapons and ammunition were brought to the Butuan City Police Station 4.
Caramat said the suspects will be facing non-bailable charges for illegal possession of explosives under Republic Act 9516 and RA 10591 or the Comprehensive Firearms and Ammunition Regulations Act of 2013.