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PRO13 nabs 12 armed men in S. Del Norte
POLICE Regional Office 13 (PRO13) Director Brigadier General Romeo M. Caramat Jr. on Wednesday said they recorded a “generally peaceful” national and local elections in the entire Caraga region amid the massive security measures they implemented to protect the voting public and poll officials last Monday.
“By the Grace of the Lord Almighty, last Monday’s elections in the Caraga region was generally peaceful, thanks to the full support we got from our military counterparts and the cooperation from the public, the candidates, and their supporters in particular,” said Caramat Jr.
Hours before the start of the voting in the region, alert Caraga police officers arrested 12 heavily-armed men in Malimono, Surigao del Norte, Brig. Gen. Caramat Jr. told People’s Tonight.
“We are still investigating the motive of the suspects in bringing the high-powered weapons with them hours before the election,” said the official in a report to Philippine National Police (PNP) Officer-in-Charge (OIC), Lt. Gen. Vicente D. Danao Jr.
According to Brig. Gen. Caramat Jr., four of the suspects identified as Abdulla Malic Muslim, 26, a resident of Lustre-Sta. Catalina, Zamboanga City; Edgar Diaz, 51, of San Vicente 1 in Bislig City, Surigao del Sur; Avenir Lim, 42, of Lower Calarian, Zamboanga City; and Junypeth Sumili, 34, a resident of Ipil, Zamboanga Sibugay were intercepted in Bgy. Pili in Malimono municipality at 1:30 a.m. Monday.
Recovered from their possession were two loaded caliber .45 pistols with magazines containing 19 live ammunition and three mobile phones.
The PRO13 director said that members of the Malimono Municipal Police Station (MPS), the Regional Mobile Force Battalion 13, the PNP Special Action Force (SAF), and the Barangay Peacekeeping Action Team were conducting a checkpoint in the area when they spotted a total of six suspects on board two motorcycles.
He said that suddenly, the motorbike drivers stopped, and four of them alighted from their vehicle after seeing the policemen. One of the suspects later threw a sling bag which yielded a pistol.
Officers placed the suspects under arrest and recovered another firearm from one of them.
Before that, local policemen arrested eight men in Purok 4, Bgy. Binocaran, while in possession of one M-14 cal. 5.56 assault rifle, two M-4 Carbine rifles, three cal. .45 pistols, one 9mm semi-automatic pistol, and several loaded magazines.
Brig. Gen. Caramat Jr. said the suspects were on board a silver Toyota Innova, a white Nissan X-Trail, and a white Toyota Wigo when intercepted by the local police.
He identified the suspects as Malimono resident Bryan Sala, 40; Kieth Non, 39, of Tagaytay City; Michael Angelo Talosig, 28, of Alaminos City in Laguna; Falcon Sinaca, 50, also a Malimono resident; Ernesto Balopeños, 36, of Brooke’s Point, Palawan; Julius Cabonce, 27, a resident of Dipolog City; and Ricky Banlas, 38, a resident of Balingoan, Misamis Oriental.
All suspects are now being held at the Malimono MPS facing charges for violation of the gun ban under the Omnibus Election Code and Republic Act 10591 or the Comprehensive Firearms and Ammunition Regulations Act of 2013, said Brig. Gen. Caramat Jr. By Alfred Dalizon