Tuesday, June 20, 2017

DOJ starts prosecution of Maute bandits

From the Business Mirror (Jun 19): DOJ starts prosecution of Maute bandits

JUSTICE department prosecutors last Sunday conducted inquest proceedings for the crime of rebellion against Mohammad Naoim Maute, alias Almahid Pangompig Romato.

Maute is believed to be the youngest brother of Omarkhayam and Abdullah Maute, leaders of the bandit group.

He is among those suspected of rebellion under Arrest Order 1, issued by the Department on National Defense on May 29. He was captured in Barangay Santa Cruz, Macasandig, Cagayan de Oro City, on June 15.

An inquest is an informal and summary investigation conducted by the public prosecutor in a criminal case involving persons arrested and detained without the benefit of a warrant of arrest.

It intends to determine whether the evidence is sufficient enough to seek court approval to keep the person in detention.

The inquest proceeding was conducted inside Camp Brig. Gen. Edilberto Evangelista in Cagayan de Oro City.

Police report indicates that he was using a fake identification card of the Mindanao State University bearing the name of Alfaiz Mamintal to get through checkpoints.

In Butuan City, meanwhile, President Duterte last Saturday denied the crisis in Marawi City was a result of a failure of intelligence.

In his visit to the base of the 401st Infantry Brigade in Butuan, Duterte underscored that the crisis in Marawi City was “not a question of failure” on the part of the government.

“It was not a failure of intelligence. Kasi kung may makita pa silang may armas, tapos sabihin nila, MI [Moro Islamic Liberation Front], MN [Moro National Liberation Front], ang standing order naman is…baka sakali mapakiusapan pa natin ang mga kapatid natin. Walang gulo,” Duterte added.

The President explained that the government had a “very soft policy toward rebels” as the officials did not realize the militants were already storing firearms and ammunition in Marawi City.

“All the while, itong Maute, with the connivance of the politicians there, ’yung mga warlords, were stockpiling. Kaya ni hindi maubos ang M-203 na bala at napakarami,” he said.

Duterte also reiterated his commitment to buy brand new air assets and “war-grade” weapons for the military to ensure that government forces would not be at a disadvantage against the terrorists, apparently backed by foreign fighters.

Early during his term, Duterte said air assets are “useless since they are only good for ceremonial fly bys”.

Duterte also called on the military to resume the use of air assets, saying foreign terrorists are fighting alongside the Maute Group.


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