Friday, November 25, 2016

Gov't forces seize high-powered guns from North Cotabato village chief

From the Philippine News Agency (Nov 25): Gov't forces seize high-powered guns from North Cotabato village chief

Joint police and military forces seized high powered firearms from the house of a village official in North Cotabato as government troops implemented "Oplan Double Barrel Alpha," a police official said Friday.

But Supt. Bernard Tayong, police chief of Midsayap police station, admitted the subject of a search warrant issued by a local court, Chairperson Renz Tukuran of Barangay Lumupog, Midsayap, North Cotabato, managed to escape.

Tukuran, alias "Datu Puti," was one of the suspected drug lords operating in the borders of North Cotabato and Maguindanao.

Tayong said after an intelligence operative confirmed the presence of Tukuran in the village, joint police, military, anti-narcotics units and Anti-Illegal Drug Special Operations Task Group, rushed to Barangay Lumupog, a village in the borders of Midsayap and Datu Piang in Maguindanao.

"The suspect and his men fled to the marshland after they noticed government forces moving toward Barangay Lumupog," Tayong said.

Government forces found in Tukuran's home one cal. 50 machine gun, one cal. 30 machine gun, five M-1 Garand rifles, one M-14 Armalite rifle, one Rocket Propelled Grenade, two 60 mm mortar, six hand grenades, a rifle grenade, three M-203 launcher, ammunition and bomb making devices.

Lt. Col. Edgar delos Reyes, 34th Infantry Battalion commander, said the raiding team also seized several sachets of methamphetamine hydrochloride or "shabu" from Tukuran's home.

The fugitive village official has about 50 heavily armed followers believed to be engaged in illegal drugs and cattle rustling.

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