Department of National Defense (DND) Secretary Voltaire Gazmin said Tuesday that with the arrest of wanted retired Major Gen. Jovito Palparan, more high-profile fugitives are expected to fall into the government's dragnet within the coming days.
"We will get them one by one," Gazmin said in Filipino but declined to mention specific names for security reasons.
Palparan, who was arrested early Tuesday, was part of the so-called "Big 5" which includes Delfin Lee, owner of Globe Asiatique Realty Holdings Corp.; former Palawan Gov. Joel Reyes and his brother, Coron Mayor Mario Reyes; and Dinagat Island Rep. Ruben Ecleo Jr., the leader of the Philippine Benevolent Missionaries Association.
Palparan is charged with the kidnapping and illegal detention of University of the Philippines (UP) students Sherlyn Cadapan and Karen Empeño in 2006.
Lee, who was arrested last March 6, is facing syndicated estafa charges for defrauding Pag-IBIG Fund members of about PHP 7 billion by using fake borrowers and fake documents.
The Reyes siblings are wanted for the murder of broadcaster Gerry Ortega while Ecleo has been convicted of parricide.
The DND chief also disclosed a decision to create a task force to arrest these high-profile fugitives so that these people can be brought to the bars of justice.