Friday, June 26, 2020

7 suspected NPAs arrested in Misamis Oriental

From the Philippine News Agency (Jun 26, 2020): 7 suspected NPAs arrested in Misamis Oriental (By Jigger Jerusalem)

Google map of Misamis Oriental.

The Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) arrested on Friday seven suspected communist guerillas and confiscated various firearms and ammunition during an operation in the Misamis Oriental town of Balingasag.

Lt. Noel Oclarit, CIDG deputy team leader in Misamis Oriental, said a combined team of police, military, and local government officials conducted the raid on suspected New People’s Army (NPA) combatants in Barangay Blanco, Balingasag, who are said to be members of the indigenous peoples (IP).

Oclarit identified the arrested individuals as Pilutong Langka, Pablita Hilogon, Reynaldo Ayuma, Dandi Hilogon, Bambi Hilogon, Padod Ayuma, and Glenn Hilogon.

Based on the information the CIDG received, Oclarit said Langka is believed to a New People’s Army fighter who goes by the nom de guerre “Ka Rex”.

He said the arresting officers were armed with eight search warrants issued by a regional court in Misamis Oriental, that led to the arrest of seven suspected persons. Two other suspects, he said, were not around during the raid.

Oclarit said the suspects yielded assorted firearms and various magazine clips and ammunition, as well as printed materials the police described as “subversive documents”.

Prior to the operation, he said CIDG received reports of the presence of an armed group in the area.

“We were able to confirm the presence of an armed group through casing and surveillance,” Oclarit said, adding that they coordinated with the Philippine Army’s 58th Infantry Battalion for the conduct of the operation.

He said some of the suspects were with the group of evacuees who camped out at the Misamis Oriental Provincial Capitol grounds in 2018 until their makeshift dwellings were demolished in 2019.

The evacuees claimed that they sought shelter at the provincial government compound for fear that they will be caught in a crossfire between state forces and communist rebels.

During the encampment, Junrey Boy Hilogon, one of the suspects, represented the group and gave statements to the media.

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