Search and rescue launched for 6 individuals abducted in Zamboanga del Norte
Marje Pelayo • July 3, 2018 • 3328
Philippine forces gear up for rescue
ZAMBOANGA SIBUGAY, Philippines – Authorities are still searching for the whereabouts of six individuals abducted in Sirawai, Zamboanga del Norte on Thursday (June 28).
The victims were identified as Feliciano Javier, Elsa Javier, Junior Javier, Rica Javier, Val Javier and five-month-old infant, Vincent Javier. The family is the caretaker of a farmhouse in the area.
According to reports from Police Regional Office 9, a certain “Abu” was asking for P400,000 ransom through a phone call.
Police Director PCSupt. Billy Beltran said they were able to speak with one of the victims who assured that they were safe.
Authorities believe the victims were abducted by a kidnap-for-ransom group headed by Jamilon Wahab. Operations to rescue the victims are still ongoing.
“Right now they are still missing and we are still awaiting the result ng investigation. We’re working this out with the military and we are also getting help from the MILF. Alam ninyo naman ito’y malapit sa kampo nila doon (As you may know, the area is close to their camp there),” Beltran said. – Dante Amento / Marje Pelayo
The vice-mayor of Baliguian, Zamboanga del Norte and his three companions were ambushed on Saturday (January 11) at around 11:30 a.m.
Initial report from Police Regional Office 9 says, Vice-Mayor Gani Esmali and the three other victims were onboard a gray SUV heading towards Siocon, Zamboanga del Norte when an undetermined number of suspects fired at them.
The perpetrators immediately left the scene onboard a white van with unknown plate number heading towards the municipality of Gutalac, Zamboanga del Norte.
Two of the victims died on the spot while Vice Mayor Esmali was declared dead upon arrival at the Siocon Distrcit Hospital. The fourth victim is currently undergoing medical treatment.
The Siocon Police is in hot pursuit of the gunmen while neighboring municipal police stations promptly launched a dragnet operation against the fleeing suspects.
The Philippine National Police-Anti Kidnapping Group (PNP-AKG) has confirmed the rescue of three Chinese nationals from a kidnap for ransom group in Bacoor, Cavite on Friday (December 13).
The victims, namely, Pham ThiTu, Zhang Juanzi, Shen Wenhui were allegedly raped by the suspects who are also Chinese nationals.
The rescue led to the arrest of the six suspects.
A statement sent to the media on Saturday said PNP-AKG teams led by PMaj. Cesar Nuñez Jr and PMaj. Edgar Pablico, together with the PNP Bacoor under PLtCol. Villaflor Bannawagan conducted the rescue after receiving reports from the partners of the victims.
The first complaint came from Huafeng Du on Dec. 12 regarding the abduction of his girlfriend, Pham.
He said the kidnappers demanded 200,000 RMB in exchange for the release of his girlfriend.
The second complaint was filed by Chang Hsiang Hao on December 11, reporting that his girlfriend Zhang Juanzi left on December 10 at around 11:00 PM but has not returned home since.
He said he received a WeChat message from the victim’s account on December 11 asking for Php 700,000 which he sent through an online payment app. However, the kidnapper did not release the victim but demanded instead for another Php 700,000 on December 12.
The third victim named Shen Wenhui was abducted inside Okada Hotel at around 10:00 in the evening on December 12 and was brought to the said place in Bacoor, Cavite. /mbmf
MANILA, Philippines— The Philippine National Police Anti-Kidnapping Group (PNP-AKG) on Tuesday (Dec. 10) arrested a Filipino security guard involved in the kidnapping of two Chinese nationals in Las Piñas City.
The suspect, named Saturnino Matias, is a security guard in a Philippine Offshore Gaming Operator (POGO) where the mastermind of the kidnapping identified as Michael Chan is purportedly working.
Authorities found out about the kidnapping incident when another Chinese national who had also been abducted was eventually released after paying a ransom of 30,000 Renminbi or an equivalent of over Php 200,000.
The police, however, are looking into robbery as a motive for the alleged kidnapping of the two Chinese nationals.
“According sa interview dun sa dalawang victim natin, naglalakad lang sila sa along Alabang nung November 26. So bale, seven days na silang naka-stay dun sa room na ‘yun […] Allegedly, may utang itong dalawa na ‘to. Nagnakaw daw sila,” PNP-AKG spokesperson PLtCol. Joel Saliba said.
The suspect, meanwhile, denied knowing that the two Chinese nationals he was guarding were victims of kidnap-for-ransom.
“Inosente po ako. Wala po akong alam diyan kasi Chinese po ang usapan nila, nagtatawanan pa sila eh. Hindi ko alam na ganito pala ‘yun,” Matias said.
He will be charged with kidnapping for ransom with serious illegal detention.
The AKG said the two are now added to the six POGO-related kidnapping cases recorded this year.
Meanwhile, the PNP-AKG will conduct a separate investigation on the alleged abduction of a female Chinese national in Makati on Monday (Dec. 9) night.
The AKG said they have not received any complaint from the relatives of the victim who the Makati City Police said is also an employee of a POGO company.
Police are also looking into unpaid loans as an angle on the case.
Former PNP chief Senator Ronald Bato Dela Rosa said authorities had been receiving reports of kidnapping incidents involving Chinese nationals even during his time.
He said the presence of POGOs in the country must not be singled out as the reason behind these incidents.
He added that even if Filipinos are not involved, authorities must still act on these cases.
“Kung yan ay kidnapping for ransom na victimizing wealthy Filipino businessmen or kahit sinong ordinaryong Pilipino […] cause of concern yan ng lahat ng mga Pilipino dito. Pero sila sila mga Intsik nagkikidnapan. Meron bang Pilipinong kinidnap ng Chinese? Wala pa naman. But still, it’s not a crime and should be stopped,” Dela Rosa said. — (from the report of Harlene Delgado) /mbmf
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